Brongniart, Alexandre älĕksäN´drə brôNyär´ [key], 1770–1847, French geologist, mineralogist, and chemist. As director of the Sèvres porcelain factory from 1800, he was responsible for its international fame. He was professor of mineralogy at the Museum of Natural History in Paris from 1822–47. Brongniart established basic principles of ceramic chemistry in his Traité des arts céramiques et des poteries (1844). With George Cuvier he wrote Essai sur la geographie mineralogique des environs de Paris (1811), in which a system of stratigraphy was developed that relied on the use of fossils for the precise dating of strata. He was also the first to develop a systematic study of trilobites and a system for the classification of reptiles.
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