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Linnaeus: The Compleat Naturalist

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The life of Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), the man who gave living organisms two Latin names, is celebrated afresh in this newly revised and magnificently illustrated edition of the definitive biography. In his native Sweden, Linnaeus is revered by children as the "Prince of Flowers" and by adults as a great biologist, the author of classics on natural history, and, owing to his impassioned study of the sex life of plants, as history's foremost "botanical pornographer."

Linnaeus was of pivotal importance in the Age of Enlightenment. Though an adventurous traveler, keen collector, zoologist, and geologist, he loved botany most of all. The son of a pastor, he believed he was chosen by God to resolve the jumbled classification of the natural world. Through his Systema Naturae, first published in 1735, he brought order to all recorded knowledge about living things, distinguishing and naming 7,700 plants and 4,400 animals in his lifetime.

This book gives a fascinating and rounded portrait of Linnaeus the man, charting his rise from a poor student at Lund University to Professor of Medicine at Uppsala and a founder of the Royal Academy of Sciences. Wilfrid Blunt's engaging text is interspersed with vivid passages from his subject's own writings--from riveting descriptions of adventures in the wilds of Lapland to a charming account of Sjupp the raccoon. Linnaeus's family life and his relations with pupils are explored alongside his epoch-making scientific achievements. William Stearn's appendix on Linnean classification provides a concise survey of the basics necessary for understanding Linnaeus's work.

Impeccably researched and highly readable, this biography is ideal for anyone interested in botany, zoology, or mineralogy, as well as naturalists and gardeners. It brings the world of Linnaeus alive with over 200 beautiful illustrations, including evocative photographs and exquisite eighteenth-century botanical drawings, paintings, and engravings.

Synopsis:

"This evocative account of Linnaeus's life and achievements has become a natural history classic. Wilfrid Blunt beautifully captures Linnaeus's zest for botany and its key place in the intellectual ferment of the eighteenth century, showing how the Linnean system was used by plant explorers from America to Japan to Lapland and helped establish the foundation of modern botanical science--as well as introducing new species to gardens all over the world. The impact of this system on the culture of Linnaeus's day was incalculable, ranging from the classification of diseases to fashionable illustrative art or spicy innuendo in writing about the sex life of plants. And the man himself was lively and likeable, with an eye for a joke in naming species after friends or enemies. This new edition of Blunt's story of the "Prince of Flowers" will make a very welcome addition to any plant-lover's library."--Janet Browne, author of Charles Darwin: Voyaging

Synopsis:

The life of Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), the man who gave living organisms two Latin names, is celebrated afresh in this newly revised and magnificently illustrated edition of the definitive biography. In his native Sweden, Linnaeus is revered by children as the "Prince of Flowers" and by adults as a great biologist, the author of classics on natural history, and, owing to his impassioned study of the sex life of plants, as history's foremost "botanical pornographer."

Linnaeus was of pivotal importance in the Age of Enlightenment. Though an adventurous traveler, keen collector, zoologist, and geologist, he loved botany most of all. The son of a pastor, he believed he was chosen by God to resolve the jumbled classification of the natural world. Through his Systema Naturae, first published in 1735, he brought order to all recorded knowledge about living things, distinguishing and naming 7,700 plants and 4,400 animals in his lifetime.

This book gives a fascinating and rounded portrait of Linnaeus the man, charting his rise from a poor student at Lund University to Professor of Medicine at Uppsala and a founder of the Royal Academy of Sciences. Wilfrid Blunt's engaging text is interspersed with vivid passages from his subject's own writings--from riveting descriptions of adventures in the wilds of Lapland to a charming account of Sjupp the raccoon. Linnaeus's family life and his relations with pupils are explored alongside his epoch-making scientific achievements. William Stearn's appendix on Linnean classification provides a concise survey of the basics necessary for understanding Linnaeus's work.

Impeccably researched and highly readable, this biography is ideal for anyone interested in botany, zoology, or mineralogy, as well as naturalists and gardeners. It brings the world of Linnaeus alive with over 200 beautiful illustrations, including evocative photographs and exquisite eighteenth-century botanical drawings, paintings, and engravings.

About the Author

Wilfrid Blunt was Senior Drawing Master at Eton College. An Associate of the Royal College of Art and a fellow of the Linnean Society of London, he authored a number of biographies and books on European art and botany. His "The Art of Botanical Illustration" has become a standard work of reference. He died in 1987. William T. Stearn was a distinguished botanist, previously of the British Museum (Natural History), now the Natural History Museum. The former president of the Linnean Society, he died in 2001.

Table of Contents

Introduction by William T. Stearn 6

PART I: THE YEARS OF STRUGGLE 1707-1735

1. Childhood 12

2. Lund 19

3. Uppsala 24

4. The Lapland journey: Lycksele Lappmark 38

5. The Lapland journey: Lule and Torne Lappmark 56

6. Work and play 71

PART II: IN SEARCH OF FAME 1735-1738

1. Germany 84

2. Holland 92

3. George Clifford 99

4. A month in England 109

5. Hortus Cliffortianus 115

6. Correspondents and critics 119

7. Farwell to Holland 123

PART III: THE PRINCE OF BOTANISTS 1738-1778

1. Physician in Stockholm 130

2. Öland and Gotland 1741 137

3. Professor in Uppsala 146

4. Västergötland 1746 159

5. Linnaeus en pantoufles 166

6. The Apostles 185

7. Skåne 1749

8. Friends and books 209

9. The man of property 219

10. The closing years 1722-8 230

11. The Linnaean collections 239

Author's bibliography 243

Carl Linnaeus chronology 244

Appendix I by William Stearn 246

Appendix II by C. J. Humphries, Natural History Museum 253

Bibliography 254

Acknowledgments 261

Index 262

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691096360
Introduction:
Stearn, William T.
Author:
Blunt, Wilfrid
Introduction by:
Stearn, William T.
Introduction:
Stearn, William T.
Author:
Blunt, Wilifrid
Author:
Stearn, William T.
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton, N.J.
Subject:
General
Subject:
Botany
Subject:
Scientists
Subject:
Naturalists
Subject:
Natural history
Subject:
Botanists
Subject:
Sweden
Subject:
Scientists - General
Subject:
Science & Technology
Subject:
History of Science and Medicine, Philosophy of Science
Subject:
Biological Sciences.
Subject:
Naturalists - Sweden
Subject:
Linne, Carl von
Subject:
Science Reference-General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Bibliography: p. 254-261.
Series Volume:
IS-2000
Publication Date:
March 2002
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Illustrations:
More than 200 color illus.
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
9.75 x 7.625 in

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Related Subjects

Biography » Science and Technology
Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Cytology and Cell Biology
Science and Mathematics » Botany » Botanical Exploration and Biographies
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

Linnaeus: The Compleat Naturalist New Hardcover
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$82.75 Backorder
Product details 288 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691096360 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,

"This evocative account of Linnaeus's life and achievements has become a natural history classic. Wilfrid Blunt beautifully captures Linnaeus's zest for botany and its key place in the intellectual ferment of the eighteenth century, showing how the Linnean system was used by plant explorers from America to Japan to Lapland and helped establish the foundation of modern botanical science--as well as introducing new species to gardens all over the world. The impact of this system on the culture of Linnaeus's day was incalculable, ranging from the classification of diseases to fashionable illustrative art or spicy innuendo in writing about the sex life of plants. And the man himself was lively and likeable, with an eye for a joke in naming species after friends or enemies. This new edition of Blunt's story of the "Prince of Flowers" will make a very welcome addition to any plant-lover's library."--Janet Browne, author of Charles Darwin: Voyaging

"Synopsis" by , The life of Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), the man who gave living organisms two Latin names, is celebrated afresh in this newly revised and magnificently illustrated edition of the definitive biography. In his native Sweden, Linnaeus is revered by children as the "Prince of Flowers" and by adults as a great biologist, the author of classics on natural history, and, owing to his impassioned study of the sex life of plants, as history's foremost "botanical pornographer."

Linnaeus was of pivotal importance in the Age of Enlightenment. Though an adventurous traveler, keen collector, zoologist, and geologist, he loved botany most of all. The son of a pastor, he believed he was chosen by God to resolve the jumbled classification of the natural world. Through his Systema Naturae, first published in 1735, he brought order to all recorded knowledge about living things, distinguishing and naming 7,700 plants and 4,400 animals in his lifetime.

This book gives a fascinating and rounded portrait of Linnaeus the man, charting his rise from a poor student at Lund University to Professor of Medicine at Uppsala and a founder of the Royal Academy of Sciences. Wilfrid Blunt's engaging text is interspersed with vivid passages from his subject's own writings--from riveting descriptions of adventures in the wilds of Lapland to a charming account of Sjupp the raccoon. Linnaeus's family life and his relations with pupils are explored alongside his epoch-making scientific achievements. William Stearn's appendix on Linnean classification provides a concise survey of the basics necessary for understanding Linnaeus's work.

Impeccably researched and highly readable, this biography is ideal for anyone interested in botany, zoology, or mineralogy, as well as naturalists and gardeners. It brings the world of Linnaeus alive with over 200 beautiful illustrations, including evocative photographs and exquisite eighteenth-century botanical drawings, paintings, and engravings.

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