From Books to Bezoars

Sir Hans Sloane and his Collections

Edited by Alison Walker, Arthur MacGregor, and Michael Hunter

Edited by Alison Walker, Arthur MacGregor, and Michael Hunter

Distributed for British Library

310 pages | 16 color plates, 60 halftones | 6 x 9 | © 2012
Cloth $60.00 ISBN: 9780712358804 Published March 2013 For sale in North and South America only

This well-illustrated volume offers fresh perspectives on the great eighteenth-century physician, naturalist, and collector Sir Hans Sloane (1660–1753), whose extensive holdings formed the basis of the British Museum and its offspring, the Natural History Museum and the British Library. The colonial milieu within which Sloane operated gets prominence here, particularly the time he spent in Jamaica. Attention is paid to his enormous network of acquaintances and correspondents throughout the world as well as to the way his collecting activities permeated every aspect of his life. Other essays consider the museum specimens accumulated by Sloane—both natural and man-made—shedding new light on his aims for acquiring and organizing them. A fascinating look at the man behind three of the United Kingdom’s most famous museums, From Books to Bezoars will appeal to students and scholars of eighteenth century studies, early modern science, and the history of the book.

Contents
Contributors
Acknowledgements
Introduction
      Michael Hunter

Collecting Hans Sloane
      James Delbourgo
‘Settle in the North of Ireland’: or, where did Sloane come from?
      Mark Purcell
From benefactor to entrepreneur: Sloane’s literary reputation 1685-1800
      Barbara M. Benedict
Sloane and the public performance of natural history
      Kathryn James
Sloane as friend and physician of the family
      Lisa Wynne Smith
Sloane and the Dutch connection
      Eric Jorink
Sloane’s travels: a colonial history of gentlemanly science
      Pratik Chakrabarti
Knowledgeable readers: Jamaican critiques of Sloane’s botany
      James Robertson
Sloane’s perspectives on the medical knowledge and health practices of non-Europeans
      Wendy D. Churchill
Obeah and the secret sources of Atlantic medicine
      Julie Chun Kim
‘… to be serviceable and profitable for their own health’: a seventeenth-century English herbal of East Indian plants owned by Sloane
      Savithri Preetha Nair
Sloane’s catalogues and the arrangement of his collections
      Marjorie Caygill
Sloane’s plant specimens at the Natural History Museum
      Charlie Jarvis, Mark Spencer and Robert Huxley (with a supplementary account of Sloane’s fossils by Cyrille Delmer)
The elephants in the collection: Sloane and the history of the earth
      Jill Cook
Sloane’s ‘Pictures and drawings in frames’ and ‘Books of miniature & painting, designs, &c.’
      Kim Sloan
Sloane as a collector of manuscripts
      Arnold Hunt
Sloane’s incunabula
      John Goldfinch
From London to Toronto: a case-study of the dispersal of Sloane’s library
      Julianne Simpson
Sloane, slavery and science: perspectives from public programmes at the Natural History Museum
      Tracy-Ann Smith and Katherine Hann
Thomas Birch’s Memoirs relating to the Life of Sir Hans Sloane

Notes
Index
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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