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Leidy, Joseph (09 September 1823–30 April 1891), comparative anatomist, paleontologist, and microscopist, was born Joseph Mellick Leidy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Philip Leidy, a hatter, and Catherine Mellick, who died twenty months later in childbirth. Soon thereafter, Leidy’s father married Christiana Taliana Mellick, Catherine’s first cousin, a determined, intelligent woman who raised Leidy. German was spoken in the Leidy (Leydig) home. As a young boy, Joseph developed an intense interest in plants, animals, and minerals, and he showed an unusual talent for drawing. He was an indifferent student at a private, classical school, spending most of his time following his interest in nature, exploring the creeks and parks of Philadelphia....