As Heard on The Daily Gardener Podcast:
James Sowerby by Paul Henderson
This book came out in 2016, and the subtitle is The Enlightenment's Natural Historian.
In this book, Paul Henderson introduces us to James Sowerby - arguably one of the best botanical illustrators during the mid-18th to mid-19th centuries. One of the reasons James was such a successful artist, was no doubt due to his extremely high intellect. He was also one of the period's most knowledgeable natural historians.
Paul introduces James this way:
“This book is the story of a remarkable man. Unusual and his breath of scientific interest which he applied successfully; unusual in his desire to learn throughout his life and to impart his knowledge widely; unusual and going against the current practices by being at one - at the same time his own researcher, writer, illustrator, teacher, publisher and bookseller; unusual in his considerable output of innovative, high-quality and influential works; and unusual in becoming the patriarch of a successful line of natural historians.”
I've talked about James numerous times on the show. He teamed up with numerous botanists during his lifetime, and his illustrations Grace the pages of many of their books. As for James, his Masterpiece was called Sowerby's Botany - a detailed 36-volume reference on the plants of England. Of course, the book also included over 2,500 hand-colored illustrations.
This book is 336 pages of the first-time biography of an incredible artist and scientist: James Sowerby.
You can get a copy of James Sowerby by Paul Henderson and support the show using the Amazon Link in today's Show Notes for around $40
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