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Medallion of Joseph Barclay Pentland, by Pierre Jean David

Joseph Barclay Pentland (1797 - 1873) was an Irish geographer, natural scientist, and traveller. Born in Ireland, Pentland was educated at Armagh. He also studied in Paris, and worked with Georges Cuvier.

With Woodbine Parish, Pentland surveyed a large part of the Bolivian Andes between 1826 and 1827. He published his Report on Bolivia in 1827. From 1836 to 1839, he served as British consul-general in Bolivia. He corresponded with Charles Darwin and William Buckland.

Pentland died in 1873, and is buried in Brompton Cemetery, London.



Further reading

  • Sarjeant, W.A.S. and Delair, J.B., "Joseph Pentland: a forgotten pioneer in the osteology of fossil marine reptiles," Proceedings of the Dorset Natural History and Archaeology Society, 1976, pp. 12-16.
  • Sarjeant, W.A.S. and Delair, J.B., "An Irishman in Cuvier’s laboratory. The letters of Joseph Pentland, 1820-1832," Bulletin of the British Museum of Natural History, Historical Series, vol. 6, no. 7, 1979, pp. 245-319.
  • Sarjeant, W.A.S., "Joseph Pentland’s early geological and geographical work in Bolivia and Peru," in S. Figueiroa and M. Lopes (eds.), Geological sciences in Latin America. Scientific relations and exchanges. (Papers presented at the XVII INHIGEO Congress, Campinas, SP, Brazil, July 19-25, 1993). Campinas Brazil: Universidade Estadual de Campinas. Instituto de Geociencias, pp. 11-27.


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