Buffon, Count Georges Louis Leclerc de. An eminent French naturalist, a member of the French Academy and of that of sciences. Was born in 1707. His "Natural History," which appeared in 1749, gave him fame, combining in an eminent degree reason, eloquence, and research. Other works from his pen obtained great applause. He professed to be a materialist. In 1739, he was named Intendant of the Jardin Royal des Plantes. Died 1788.