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The Tulip sold nearly 200,000 copies in the UK and US alone Two full-colour plate sections (16 pages in total) retain the beautiful illustrations that made the original edition so desirable Previously published as The Naming of Names, this new trade paperback edition positions the book as a traditional history book about the human side of the story, not simply an illustrated gardening book
With this book, British author Pavord (The Tulip) quashes any notion that the history of plant taxonomy is a dull pursuit. Her story covers 2000 years of the search for order in the plant world, beginning in third-century B.C.E. Greece with Aristotle's great pupil Theophrastus and ending in late 17th-century England with the man who coined the word botany, John Ray. Her crisp prose is complemented by lavish, full-color illustrations (though strangely lacking is a portrait of one of the author's heroes, the aforementioned Theophrastus). The Renaissance developments are especially fascinating: the spectacular refinement of plant illustration in herbals, the establishment of botanical gardens, and the flood of new plant discoveries that came with the advent of world navigation. Pavord demonstrates convincingly how, from about the 15th century on, plants came to be an object of interest for their intrinsic value, not just for their medicinal, nutritive, or ritual purposes. There is much here for readers of all sorts, making this book a solid choice for large public collections. It is also highly recommended for special and academic collections, though professional botanists may wince at the short shrift given French botanist Joseph Pitton de Tournefort and Swedish taxonomist Carl Linnaeus.-Robert Eagan, Windsor P.L., Ont. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Anna Pavord is the gardening correspondent for the Independent and the author of eight previous books, including the bestselling The Tulip. She contributes to a number of magazines, both in the US and the UK and regularly fronts programmes for BBC Radio 3 and 4. She chairs the Gardens Panel of the National Trust and sits on the Parks and Gardens Panel of English Heritage. She lives in Dorset, England, where she spent thirty years restoring the garden of an old rectory. She has recently moved to a new house and started another garden. She is married and has three daughters.
'A history of the naming of plants. Part treasure hunt, part travel guide and occasional biography, this book doesn't disappoint' Sunday Times 'Her celebration of scholar-botanists is thrillingly told, guiding us from the ground-breaking work of the ancient philosopher Theofrastus to the seventeenth-century plantsman John Ray, who established botany as a scientific discipline' Sunday Telegraph 'Pavord's epic account of the botanical pioneers who named and classified plants before the over-esteemed Linnaeus is a fabulously interesting read' Independent '[A] beautifully written, gloriously illustrated history of how brilliant men from the days of Aristotle attempted to classify the world's plants. Here are enough upstagings and rivalries for 100 novels and endless fascinating facts' Jilly Cooper, Daily Telegraph Books of the Year