N.P. Offprint published from the Annals of Botany, Vol. XXXII, No. CXXVIII, 1918. Offprint. Pamphlet. Stapled wraps, 9 x 6 inches, offprint including pp. 466–501. Wrappers age-toned with creasing to wrappers and leaves; staining and sunning to wrappers, particularly at edges, with some spotting; staple rust; leaves unmarked and well-preserved with some wrinkling. This original offprint contains seven illustrated figures by Arber herself. Aged but very good offprint inscribed by the great British plant morphologist Agnes Arber to top of front wrapper: “With kind regards / A. A.” Especially rare with inscription. Item #113
Original offprint authored and inscribed by Agnes Arber (1879–1960), the pioneering anatomist, historian, and botanist who would become the first woman botanist to be elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society and the first woman to receive the Gold Medal of the Linnean Society of London for her contributions to botany. Born in London in 1879, Arber attended the North London Collegiate School founded by Frances Buss, a leading proponent of women’s education. It was here that Arber became fascinated with botany through her introduction to Ethel Sargant, a British botanist who was among the first women elected into the Linnean Society and who delivered regular school presentations to Arber’s science club. Sargant later became a central influence on Arber’s research program. After studying at University College in London, she became a member at Newnham College, Cambridge where she continued to earn top honors for her scientific work, eventually earning her Doctorate of Science in 1905. Arber’s father gave her early childhood lessons in the art of illustration, which would later assist Arber in illustrating her own professional scientific publications. Arber would focus much of her professional attention to the monocotyledon family of flowering plants and, in her later years, she would become further renowned for her philosophical and historical work in botany. Arber’s philosophical influences included Nehemiah Grew, Marcello Malpighi, and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, leading her to author several influential comparisons and translations of their works. Arber is now best known for her pathbreaking book, The Natural Philosophy of Plant Form (1950), wherein she evaluates concept formation in research and the philosophical foundations of plant morphology. In her final work, The Manifold and the One, published in 1957, Arber gave full flight to her unorthodox philosophical views, combining Buddhist, Hindu, and Taoist thought with European philosophy. This original offprint exhibits Arber at her finest and includes several intricate illustrations as well as a rare personal inscription to the top of the front wrapper: “With kind regards, A.A.” A rare inscription by Arber.