Abundant Beauty: The Adventurous Travels of Marianne North, Botanical Artist
In 1871, Marianne North, a brilliant artist with a keen interest in botany, set-forth to travel the world on a quest to paint indigenous plants in their natural habitat. Encouraged by her friend Charles Darwin, North travelled by boat, train, mule, foot and palanquin to every continent except Antarctica. She circled the globe twice over fifteen years and accumulated an extensive and valuable collection of more than eight hundred paintings, which today comprise the esteemed Marianne North Gallery at the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, London.
North — high-spirited, indefatigable, and brave — also kept detailed journals, which were posthumously published in three volumes in the late 1800s. Abundant Beauty collects the most engaging writings from those journals in one edition, including rich descriptions of botanica and delightful accounts of local people and customs from her sometimes dangerous travels. Abundant Beauty is a fascinating and informative read for botanists, gardeners, historians, and armchair travellers.
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