Lecture Details and Reviews

Natural History leaps forward during the Enlightenment

2nd May, 2017 Prof Paul Henderson
This illustrated talk will show how remarkable the 18th and 19th centuries were for natural history. Art and science went together to reveal nature’s wonders through voyages, discovery and communication – often using beautiful coloured plates and books. It focusses on one man – James Sowerby - and his considerable network of fellow naturalists. He dramatically improved our understanding of plants, as well as of fungi, minerals, meteorites, fossils and animals. New species were described, experiments about light and colour were made, learned societies were started, his museum was established, and lords and ladies were given instruction on drawing. He left an invaluable and colorful legacy which is used and appreciated to the present day.

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