Étienne Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire (1772-1844) studied various subjects before at the age of 21, he became Professor of Zoology for Vertebrate Animals at the Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle. With his guidance the collection gained international recognition. In 1798 he worked on the scientific commission of Napoleons in Egypt collecting specimens. It was threatened with confiscation by the British following the defeat of Napoleon and in turn he contemplated destroying it. The British promptly backed off from the demand. In 1804, Frédéric Cuvier accepted a position at the Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle as keeper where he went on to co-write for this work, the Histoire Naturelle des Mammiferes. Many of the species were little known. As it was published over several years it is a rare work. Brunet II, 1535-1536; Nissen ZBI 1525; Wood p.354.