Monthly Archives: January 2017

Professor Martyn Writes to Dr Pulteney

One of my current voluntary activities consists in part of thumbing through an elderly card index, which reposes in an elderly and beautiful wooden card index case. In the course of this rummaging, I have noticed with alarm the increasing … Continue reading

Posted in Biography, Botany, Cambridge, Gardens, History, Natural history, Printing and Publishing | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Westminster Bridge

I tend to ignore the porcelain gallery at the Fitzwilliam Museum, since, as I have mentioned before, I really don’t like the coy, arch, simpering, figurative pieces that populate so many of the shelves. A quick genuflect towards the bookcase … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Biography, Cambridge, History, London, Museums and Galleries, Venice | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Object of the Month: January 2017

If ever I were to take up collecting as a serious pastime (as distinct from the random acquisition of books, plants and balls of wool), I think I would go for Italian maiolica pharmacy jars. (The sine qua non, of … Continue reading

Posted in Archaeology, Art, Botany, Cambridge, History, Museums and Galleries, Natural history, Venice | Tagged , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Plant of the Month: January 2017

My mahonia is looking pretty cheerful at the moment: as good a reason as any to find out a bit more about it – including, I hope, the reason for its flowering in the coldest months of the year, when … Continue reading

Posted in Botany, Cambridge, Exploration, Gardens, Natural history, Printing and Publishing | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dr Ducarel Writes to Dr Watson

Whether history has been kind to Andrew Coltée Ducarel (1713–85) rather depends on which source you use. Francis Grose and Horace Walpole seem both to have loathed him (but didn’t the latter loathe almost everyone?). Others, including John Nichols, have … Continue reading

Posted in Bibliography, Biography, Botany, Gardens, History, London, Natural history, Printing and Publishing | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments