Born Aug. 4, 1838, in Paris; died Apr. 3, 1871, in Chatou. Member of the Paris Commune of 1871. Blanquist.
The son of the physiologist P. Flourens, Gustave Flourens, a naturalist, succeeded to his father’s chair at the Collège de France in 1863. In 1864, however, he was dismissed because of the atheistic orientation of his lectures. From 1866 to 1868 he fought with the Greeks of Crete for the island’s liberation from Turkish rule. After taking part in the abortive Paris uprising of February 1870 against Napoleon Ill’s regime, Flourens fled from France. In Great Britain, he became a close friend of K. Marx and joined the First International. After France’s revolution of September 1870, he commanded battalions of the National Guard. Flourens joined with L. A. Blanqui to lead an uprising on Oct. 31, 1870, against the Government of National Defense. As a member of the Paris Commune of 1871, he served on the Commune’s Military Commission. During the Communards’ march on Versailles, he was captured and brutally killed by Versaillais troops.