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Biographical entry Clark, John (1885 - 1956)

21 March 1885
Glasgow, United Kingdom
1 June 1956
Mooroolbark, Victoria, Australia


John Clark was an entomologist who for many years was one of Australia's few authorities on ants, but whose research was hampered by a lack of formal education. His research centred on the Dorylinae, Myrmeciinae and Dolichoderini. He is noted for having described the world's most primitive living ant, Nothomyrmecia. For some years he worked as Entomologist with the National Museum of Victoria which in1933 purchased his collection of over 8,000 ant specimens. Clark's The Formicidae of Australia, volume 1 (1951), produced with CSIRO funding and after an unfortunate editorial process, was not well received because of difficulties with the key and synonymy. His later collection of ants was deposited after his death with the Australian National Insect Collection where it formed the nucleus of the Formicid collection. Several species of ants have been named in his honour.



Life event - Migrated to Queensland
1920 - 1926
Career position - Assistant Entomologist, Western Australian Department of Agriculture
1926 - 1944
Career position - Entomologist, National Museum of Victoria

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Published resources

Book Sections

Journal Articles

  • Brown, W. L., 'John Clark', Entomological News, 67 (8) (1956), 197-9. Details
  • Greaves, T., 'Obituary: John Clark', Australian Journal of Science, 19 (1) (1956), 23. Details


See also

  • Upton, M. S., A Rich and Diverse Fauna: the history of the Australian National Insect Collection 1926 - 1991 (Melbourne: CSIRO Publishing, 1997), 386 pp. Details

Helen Cohn