Jacques Joseph Champollion-Figeac bigraphy, stories - Archaeologists

Jacques Joseph Champollion-Figeac : biography

5 October 1778 - 9 May 1867

Jacques Joseph Champollion-Figeac (5 October 1778 – 9 May 1867) was a French archaeologist, elder brother of Jean-François Champollion (decipherer of the Rosetta Stone).

In popular culture

Champollion was portrayed by Stuart Bunce in the 2005 BBC docudrama Egypt.


He was born at Figeac in the département of Lot. He became professor of Greek and librarian at Grenoble. His research in Grenoble in 1803 revealed the existence of a crypt under the church of St. Laurent, but he was compelled to retire in 1816 on account of the part he had taken during the Hundred Days. He afterwards became keeper of manuscripts at the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris, and professor of palaeography at the École des Chartes.

In 1850 he became librarian of the Château de Fontainebleau. He edited several of his brother's works, and was also author of original works on philological and historical subjects, among which may be mentioned Nouvelles recherches sur les patois ou idiomes vulgaires de la France (1809), Annales de Lagides (1819) and Chartes latines sur papyrus du VIe siècle de l'ère chrétienne. His son Aimé-Louis (1812-1894) became his father's assistant at the Bibliothèque Nationale, and besides a number of works on historical subjects wrote a biographical and bibliographical study of his family in Les Deux Champollion (Grenoble, 1887).

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