Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
1937 Mendel Medal Recipient
Rev. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J., distinguished paleontologist and explorer with the National Geological Survey of
China, was born near Royat, Central France, in the year 1881. His scientific career dates from 1911 when he began his
first studies on early man at the University of Paris under the celebrated vertebrate paleontologist, Marcellin Boule.
After receiving the degree, Doctor of Philosophy, he served for some time as Professor of Paleontology at Institut
Catholique de Paris.
In the summer of 1923, the French Ministry of Education and the Musee National d'Histoire Naturelle sent him with Pere
Licent on a geological expedition to the Ordos, along the Great Wall of China. Here he did his first geologic and
stratigraphic work in China, and began the work on source materials concerning early man, which he has carried on ever
since with conspicuous success. He was also intimately associated with Pere Licent in the development and enrichment of
the Hoangho - Paiho Museum. Together they led a combined paleontological mission of the Musee National d'Histoire
Naturelle and the Hoangho - Paiho Museum in 1924, in 1926, and again in 1927. Pere Teilhard was associated with other
important expeditions into the interior of Asia. He also has co-operated with the American Museum of Natural History,
New York City, and with the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia.
From 1915 on, Pere Teilhard has contributed extensively to scientific journals in Belgium, China, England and France.
A representative collection of his works is to be found in the Osborn Library of the American Museum of Natural History
in New York.
He is a member and one time President of the Societe Geologique de France, honorary adviser of the National
Geological Survey of China, and reipient of the Medal Grand Prix de Institut International in 1931.
The Mendel Medal Bulletin. Villanova College, Villanova, Pennsylvania. IX: 68 (1937).
Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre, philosopher, paleontologist;
born Auvergne, France, May 1, 1881; Son of Emmanuel T.
de Chardin; student religion Jesuit school, Villefranche,
later in Sussex, England; student of geology in Paris;
Sc.D., University of Paris, 1922. Taught science, Cairo,
Egypt; ordained priest Society of Jesus, Roman Catholic
Church, 1912; worked under Marcellin Doule, Institute of
Human Paleontology, Museum of Natural History, Paris;
professor of geology Catholic Institute of Paris; made
several scientific expeditions to Far East, taking part
in the discovery of a skull of Peking man; named director Laboratory
of Advanced Studies in Geology and Palentology, Paris, 1938;
in China during World War II; returned to Paris, 1946,
was forbidden by superiors to publish philosophy or put
foward this candidature for professorship in College de
France; elected Membre de l'Institut; moved to U.S., 1951,
conducted anthropology projects for Werner Gren Foundation,
New York City. Director of Research Centre National de
la Recherche Scientifique. Served as stretcher bearer,
World War I. Named officer Legion of Honor. Corresponding
member of the Academy des Sciences. Contributed to
Western understanding of paleontology and geology of the
Far East; his philosophy (published posthumously) fuses
scientific and religion in analyzing the evolution,
phenomenon and future of man. Author books including:
Building the Earth; Phenomenon of Man, 1959; Divine Milieu,
1960; Letters from a Traveller, 1962; Future of Man, 1964;
Hymn of the Universe, 1965; Making of a Mind, 1965.
Died after a stroke, New York City, April 10, 1955.
Who Was Who in America. Volume IV, 1961-1968. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who, 1968,
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J.