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Gurney, William
Natural history, commenced at Spring Lodge School / by William Gurney.
Exeter? 1822
Physical Description:
1 volume (97 pages, 11 leaves of plates) : illustrations ; 26 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
In Process QK47.G87 N38 1822
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Archives & Manuscripts
The Spring Lodge School of the present manuscript probably corresponds to a school of that name in Witham, Essex.
Bound in black half morocco and marbled boards.
Manuscript text introducing the student to Linnaeus and aspects of botany and natural history. The writing, presumably copied by William Gurney, is in a very neat cursive throughout. Following a number of chapters on describing all plant parts from root to flower and seeds, Gurney presents all the 24 classes from the Linnaean System in general but specific terms suitable to student understanding. This information is completemented by 11 plate-like illustrations included at the end, executed in watercolor and pen and black ink.
The text is elementary and easy for any primary school student to understand. The watercolor images complement the text exceptionally well, despite being of a modest level of sophistication. It is appareant that Mr. Gurney had consulted recently published books with colored copper engravings for a number of the images present on the plates. Nevertheless, this is an exceptional manuscript for instruction of young students in Botany at a time in England when there was a major advancement in plant collecting by explorers and classification by noted English botanists, like Brown, Hooker, Lindley and others.
Subject Terms:
Botany -- Study and teaching.
Gurney, William.
Natural history -- Study and teaching.
School notebooks -- Great Britain.
Vegetation classification -- Great Britain.
Exercise books.

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