Bull. zool. Norn., vol. 43, pt 1, April 1986 107 DATES AND AUTHORSHIP OF THE TEXT VOLUMES OF THE HISTOIRE NATURELLE SECTION OF SAVIGNY'S DESCRIPTION DE L'EGYPTE Z.N.(S.)2515 By M. E. Tollitt (The Secretariat, International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature) The dates of the Histoire naturelle section of M. J. C. L. de Savigny's Description del'Egypte have always been somewhat obscure. The authorship of one of the parts is also contentious. Nevertheless, the work has long been recognised as being of major importance in zoological literature as it contains accounts of many new taxa. It is important therefore to reach a consensus on its authorship and dating. 2. The full title of 'Egypte' is Description de I'Egypte, ou recueil des observations et des recherches qui ont ete faites en Egypte pendant I'expedi-tion de I'armee frangaise, public par les ordres de sa Majeste I'Empereur Napoleon le Grand. The first edition of the Histoire naturelle section consists of five volumes, three of double folio-sized plates (71-5 x 52 cm), of which volumes 1 and 2 contain zoological material (volume 2bis being botanical and mineralogical plates) and two folio-sized volumes (39 x 24 cm) of text. The plates were almost certainly published independently of the text volumes and over several years. Consequently their dating constitutes a separate problem and is not dealt with in this paper (but see Pallary, 1934). Volume 1 of the text volumes consists of four discrete parts. Volume 2, although containing several individual contributions, is not expressed in parts. 3. Sherborn, 1897, made the first complete analysis of the dates and authors of the zoological portions of the text of the Histoire naturelle section and because of the meticulous nature of his work and the general familiarity with his conclusions it is his guidelines I shall follow. 4. Volume 1, part 1, Histoire naturelle des Poissons du Nil by Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (pp. 1-52) and Systeme des Oiseaux de I'Egypte et de la Syrie by Marie Jules-Cesar Lelorgne de Savigny (pp. 63-1 14; pp. 53-62 dealing with botanical topics) are given by Sherborn as pubhshed in 1809. This date agrees with that given by Isidore GeoflFroy Saint-Hilaire, 1847, p. 425, for this part of his father's contribution. The remaining parts of zoological interest in volume 1 , part 1 , are Description des Reptiles qui se trouvent en Egypte by Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (pp. 115-120 with pp. 121-160 by his son Isidore), Explication Sommaire des Planches de Reptiles (supplement) by Jean Victor Audouin (pp. 161-184), Description des Crocodiles de I'Egypte by E. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (pp. 185-264), Suite de I'histoire naturelle des Poissons du Nil (pp. 265-310) by I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire and Histoire naturelle des Poissons de la Mer Rouge et de la Mediterranee (pp. 311-343) also by I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire.