John George Children

John George Children

John George Children

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John George Children (18 May 1777 – 1 January 1852 in Halstead/Kent) was a British chemist, mineralogist and zoologist.

Children studied at Queens' College, Cambridge. In 1822 he was working as a librarian in the Department of Antiquities at the British Museum when he was appointed assistant keeper of the Natural History Department in succession to William Elford Leach. The appointment was controversial as he was less qualified than another applicant, William John Swainson. After the division of the Department into three sections in 1837 he became keeper of the Department of Zoology, retiring in 1840 and succeeded by his assistant John Edward Gray.

Children was made a fellow of the Royal Society in 1807, and served as the society's secretary in 1826, and from 1830 to 1837.

In 1833, he was founding president of what became the Royal Entomological Society of London.

His name is commemorated in the Australian Children's python, Antaresia childreni, the Australian stick insect , the North American lady beetle ,and the mineral childrenite. John James Audubon named a warbler after him, but the specimen turned out to be a juvenile Yellow Warbler.

His daughter was Anna Atkins, a botanist, who is best-known for her book of cyanotype photograms of algae, the first book of exclusively photographic images ever made.


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