© 2006

Draughtsmen, Botanists and Nature: The Construction of Eighteenth–Century Botanical Illustrations


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Pages 1-18
  3. Pages 149-184
  4. Pages 185-228
  5. Pages 265-271
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 273-295

About this book


This book is the first in-depth study of eighteenth-century botanical illustrations, and its findings offer a completely new insight into the working practices of the botanists and scientific draughtsmen of this period. The author describes the different production stages of these illustrations, traces their uses by means of the private correspondence of participants and the documentation of the learned societies and academies, and explores their visual language, with particular emphasis placed on the difficult issue of colour. Finally, and for the first time, the author presents a convincing description of how these botanical illustrations developed, ascertaining the criteria that drove this process, which was arrived at through a careful study of the many copying links that the author discovered existed between images of the same species -- a sophisticated strategy that fulfilled the exacting requirements of eighteenth-century scientific botanical illustrations.


botanical illustration epistemology illustration nickel philosophy philosophy of science

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.University of BernSwitzerland

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Draughtsmen, Botanists and Nature: The Construction of Eighteenth–Century Botanical Illustrations
  • Authors Kärin Nickelsen
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer 2006
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Humanities, Social Sciences and Law Philosophy and Religion (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-4020-4819-7
  • Softcover ISBN 978-90-481-7199-6
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-4020-4820-3
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages IX, 295
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Philosophy of Science
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


From the reviews:

"It is the first thorough study of eighteenth century botanical illustrations. … The book is richly illustrated with well chosen pictures, facilitating the discussion. In all, this is a book that can be warmly recommended to all interested in the history of botany as well as in the pictorial world of Linnaeus’ times." (Gunilla Törnvall, Svenska Linnesällscapets Arsskrift, 2008)