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Natural History of Barbados. In Ten Books

HUGHES, Griffith

Publication Date: 1750
From G.S. MacManus Co., ABAA (Bryn Mawr, PA, U.S.A.)

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HUGHES, Griffith. The Natural History of Barbados. In Ten Books. London: Printed for the Author, and sold by most booksellers in Great Britain and Ireland, 1750. Folio (16 x 10 1/4 inches). 10pp. list of subscribers, 15-line errata printed on verso of final page of preface. 30 engraved plates (12 after G.D. Ehret, others by Mynde, G. Bickham and others), 1 double-page engraved map of the island by T. Jefferys, occasional engraved headpieces (including A Prospect of Bridge-Town in the Island of Barbadoes). Contemporary full double gilt-ruled speckled calf, raised spine bands, compartments ruled in gilt, red morocco spine label. Head of spine chipped, some wear to foot of spine, front outer hinge tender, small amount of faint scattered foxing, else very good. HUNT 536. SABIN 33582. GREAT FLOWER BOOKS (1990), p.104. NISSEN BBI 950. Ripley 140. WOOD 393. Calmann Ehret: Flower Painter extraordinary, p. 67. Large paper copy of the first edition of the most important early botanical and dendrological work on Barbados, with plates by Ehret, among the greatest of all botanical painters. About one-fifth of the 1,000 subscribers received large paper copies. Hughes published The Natural History at his own expense, and writes in a pleasing factual style. He notes in the preface that everything included was either observed by the author himself or "had from Persons of known Veracity." Despite the title, the work is largely devoted to the botany and dendrology of the island. Of the 12 "books" or chapters (not 10 as on the title), 8 are dedicated to trees, shrubs, and plants. The plants are ordered into chapters according to physical appearance: Nuciferous (nut-bearing), Pomiferous (fruit-bearing), Pruniferous (bearing plum-like fruit), etc. Hughes, who was rector of St. Lucy's parish, Barbados, and a fellow of the Royal Society, gives a physical description of each plant, followed by notes on the edibility (or inedibility) of the fruit or nuts and their uses, both commercially and medicinally. Among the most noted descriptions in the book is his account of the "forbidden fruit" of the island, i.e., among the earliest descriptions of the grapefruit. Following p.314 is an interesting 7pp. glossary of "Botanical and Technical Terms" supplied largely by "the accurate Mr. Miller of Chelsea" (presumably Philip Miller, author, foreman o. Bookseller Inventory # 70643

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Natural History of Barbados. In Ten Books

Publication Date: 1750

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition

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All books are in reasonable second-hand condition. We accept VISA, MASTERCARD, or personal check. Checks can be made out to the George S. MacManus Company, 12 Water Street, Bryn Mawr, PA, 19010 USA. Emails can be sent to Phone numbers: 610-520-7273. FAX: 610-520-7272. All inquiries should be directed to Clarence Wolf. Deferred billing available for libraries. PA residents add 6%sales tax.

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