London, South Kensington
8 May 2003
PARKINSON, John (1567-1650). Theatrum botanicum: The Theater of Plants ... shewing withall the many errors, differences, and oversights of sundry authors that have formerly written of them, London: printed by Thomas Cotes, 1640. 2° (341 x 226mm). Engraved title with portrait of the author by William Marshall, numerous woodcut illustrations. (Lacking first blank, 3 preliminary leaves and errata at end, lower corner of titles and first 5 leaves repaired, just touching border of engraved title, lower corner of 6E1 torn away without loss of text, 7F1 [index] with a few tears, one causing loss of a few letters, 7I5 [final leaf of index] with repaired tear causing loss of some text, occasional light soiling, or light browning.) Contemporary calf (rebacked, front joints cracked, extremities worn).
FIRST EDITION of this "compilation from various botanical writings including the unpublished material left by de l'Obel at the time of his death. This had been purchased by Parkinson" (Henrey). However, Parkinson attempts the description of nearly 4000 plants, 1000 more than Johnson's edition of Gerrard's Herbal published in 1630, and includes the names of 28 species not previously recorded in Britain, e.g. the Strawberry Tree from the West part of Ireland and the Lady's Slipper orchid from Lancashire. Arber Herbals p.136; Freeman 2925; Henrey I, 286; Hunt 235; Nissen BBI 1490; Pritzel 6934; STC 19302.
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