Reclus, Jean Jacques Élisée (zhäN zhäk ālēzāˈ rəklüˈ) [key], 1830–1905, French geographer, b. Gironde, educated mainly in Germany, where he studied under Karl Ritter. Several times he was forced to leave France because of his political views; he traveled in the British Isles, the United States, and South America and for many years lived in Switzerland. He was professor of comparative geography at the Univ. of Brussels from 1895 to 1905. The great work of Reclus is his Nouvelle Géographie universelle (19 vol., 1876–94; tr. The Earth and Its Inhabitants, 19 vol., 1876–94). La Terre (2 vol., 1868–69) was also translated into English ( The Earth, 2 vol., 1871).