Title: Letters on the Elements of Botany, hand-coloured engraved plate to illustrate letter thirty-one

Creator: Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 1712-1778.

Date: 1794

Bibliographic Citation: Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, 1712-1778. Letters on the Elements of Botany: Addressed to a Lady / by the celebrated J.J. Rousseau; translated into English, with notes, and twenty-four additional letters, fully explaining the system of Linnaeus, by Thomas Martyn. London: Printed for B. and J. White, 1794.

Notes: Thomas Martyn, Professor of Botany at Cambridge, extracted Rousseau’s Lettres élémentaires sur la botanique from the multi-volume collected editions of Rousseau’s work, translated them and added to them letters of his own and colored plates so that “they might be of use to such of my fair countrywomen and unlearned countrymen as wished to amuse themselves with natural history.” Martyn’s Letters made explicit reference to the Linnean system, showing how to classify plants by a close look at thier anatomy.

Physical Description: image.figure (illustration).colour 21 × 26 cm

Language: English

Description: Martyn’s volume proved very popular and was subsequently reprinted eight times, as well as being translated back into French with his additions. It supported the perception of botany as an acceptable pursuit for enlightened ladies in England.

Subject: Botany.
Plants — Classification.

Publisher: Rare Books and Special Collections, McGill University

is Part Of Exhibition: Interpersonal Print

Exhibition Theme: Domesticated Botany

Call Number: QK92 R8 1794 Rare Books/Special Collections – Blacker Wood Rare Books QK92 R8 1794 Rare Books/Special Collections

Image Identifier: 13_001099475_rousseau-p67