Florentino Ameghino was an Argentinian paleontologist, who was credited as being one of the founding paleontologists of South America. He was one of the early leaders in the fields of phylogenetics and evolutionary biography in Paleontology.
He was born in Luján, Buenos Aires province, Argentina. Of the two Ameghino brothers, Florentino is arguably the more famous of the two. The younger brother Carlos would go on expeditions into the field and send the specimens back to Florentino, who would then analyse and describe them. This led to Florentino amassing the largest private collection of fossils in the world at the time.
In 1886, fellow paleontologist Francisco P. Moreno hired Florentino as the Deputy Director of the Museum of La Plata, and his brother Carlos as a field naturalist. After Carlos had discovered, and Florentino described, around 122 new species from along the Santa Cruz River, Francisco Moreno grew jealous and banned the brothers from the museum. This started the War of Bones (La Guerra de los huesos). Both Francisco Moreno and Florentino continued their own expeditions from this point, altering location information in their notes to prevent the other party from learning any useful information.
Because of his contributions to paleontology, zoology, and Argentina, Florentino has had many tributes. Schools, towns, approximately 110 species, and even a crater on the moon were named after him.
Florentino died in 1911, after resisting surgery to treat his diabetes.