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Louise Leakey

Princess Louise de Merode (née: Leakey, born 21 March 1972) is a Kenyan paleontologist. She does research and field work on human fossils in Eastern Africa.[1]


  • Biography 1
  • Genealogy 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


Louise Leakey was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1972, the same year that her grandfather Louis Leakey died. She first became actively involved in fossil discoveries in 1977, at the age of six, when she became the youngest documented person to find a hominoid fossil.[2]

Louise Leakey received her International Baccalaureate from United World College of the Atlantic, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology and Biology from the University of Bristol. She received a PhD from the University College, London,[3] in 2001.

In 1993, Louise Leakey joined her mother Meave Leakey, as a co-leader of paleontological expeditions in Northern Kenya. The Koobi Fora research project, has been the main program behind some of the most notable hominid fossil discoveries of the past two decades, the most recent being Kenyanthropus platyops.[1]

Louise Leakey has promoted an initiative to place digital models of fossil collections in a virtual laboratory African Fossils where models can be downloaded, 3D printed or cut in cardboard for reassembly.

In 2003, Louise Leakey married Prince Emmanuel de Merode, a Belgian primatologist. She is styled princesse de Merode by marriage. The couple have two daughters:

  • Princess Seiyia de Merode; born in 2004
  • Princess Alexia de Merode; born in 2006.[4]


See also


  1. ^ a b Mitchell, Ryan 2003. Anthropologist Louise Leakey carries "family banner". [1]
  2. ^ Pearson, Stephanie (2003-12). "Louise Leakey" in "XX Factor". Outside Magazine, December 2003. Retrieved from
  3. ^ "Bios: Louise Leakey". Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  4. ^ Bowman-Kruhm, Mary (2005). The Leakeys: A Biography. ISBN 0-313-32985-0.

External links

  • African Fossils
  • Koobi Fora Research Project
  • Leakey Foundation
  • Louise Leakey at National Geographic
  • Louise Leakey at TED
    • "A dig for humanity's origins" (TED2008)
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