French physician and naturalist René Primevère Lesson (1794-1849)
enlisted in the navy during the Napoleonic wars.
In the 1820s he sailed around the world aboard La Coquillewith
a scientific expedition headed by Louis-Isadore Duperrey.
Chief among Lesson’s duties during the voyage was
collecting zoological specimens that served as the basis for a number
of well-regarded monographs. He is best remembered
for the books he released on some of the most beautiful birds in
the world: hummingbirds from the Americas and
birds of paradise from New Guinea.