Voyages of Discovery : Three Centuries of Natural History Exploration

by A.L. Rice

Other authorsDavid Bellamy (Introduction)
Hardcover, 2000




London ; Hong Kong : Scriptum Editions, in association with the Natural History Museum, London ; c2000.


"Voyages of discovery is a mesmerising visual record of ten of the most significant natural history expeditions. Superb artworks and photographs spanning three centuries document advances and watersheds in the field of natural science. The stories behind these images - of explorers, naturalists, artists and photographers - entwine into a fascinating study of human achievement and natural wonder. Among the many stories of adventure and great scientific endeavour are: Sir Hans Sloane's journey to Jamaica in 1687; James Cook's perilous Pacific crossings; and Darwin's historic voyage aboard the HMS Beagle. Hand-picked from the vast Library of the Natural History Museum, London, the illustrations and artworks contained here form a rare collection, most of which are exclusively presented in this stunning book."--Provided by publisher.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member Africansky1
This book is a visual feast and a delight to read. The sub title , "A visual celebration of ten of the greatest natural history expeditions" , introduces the reader to a manageable number of important scientific expeditions that collectively yielded rich rewards for the scientific community and the Natural Hisotyr Museum of London. That mix of curiosity , scientific endeavor, government support , brave men (and one brave woman) and the artists who captured all the rare and wonderful animal and plant life have given the Museum in London a collection of 70 million specimens.

This book captures the art of 300 years of exciting and important discoveries coordinated from Britain as the expire grew and exreached and reached further abroad to the remote and exotic. This book tells you in brief outline about the experiences and travels of more than 20 explorers who set out to discover the world and to bring their specimens back to England . Behind them stood the art and draughtsmanship of innumerable artists who captured these plants and creatures (and some times strange people) so magnificently in water colours and line drawings and which now constitute treasures in their own right. The book presents the art to a wider public and enrich new generations; often they were the vital documentary record. Photography came later . The book is a visual feast.

It is a beautifully made book in every sense and is a fine collaborations of author , explorers , museum curators and artists . The publishers, Firefly books have produced a highly collectable work. We the modern reader have our appetite whetted in those brief bibliographies of men such as Darwin, Banks, Wallace, Cook Sloane , Wallace, Flinders and we meet one woman , Maria Sibylla Merian . One want to find out more and locate other books of each of the explorers . The book has fine illustrations, reproduced from many sources, brief biographies, a useful bibliography and an index. All round a lovely addition to a library on natural history, travel and exploration, the art of natural history and museum collections.
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