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John Hill hand-coloured Herbal engraving c1756.

John Hill hand-coloured Herbal engraving c1756.


by Hill, John

Toothwort, Arabis, Common Woad, Sinapistrum, Crambe, Rocket, Honesty, Violet, Whitlow Grass, Shepherds Purse Herb engravings c1756.

Original hand-coloured copperplate engravings by Boyce for “The British Herbal: an History of Plants and Trees, Natives of Britain, cultivated for use or raised for Beauty” published in London circa 1756 by John Hill (1716-1775). John Hill (1716-1775) worked with his father in his herb gardens and attended lectures on Botany given under the auspices of the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries at Chelsea Physic Garden. After qualifying as an apothecary, Hill set up and practised medicine as a ‘quack’ doctor. Hill travelled the country gathering rare plants which he illustrated, described, collected seed from, and sold by subscription.

John Hill was endowed with the order of Vasa by the King of Sweden. This knighthood was subsequently recognized by George III of England. Described as ‘a man of real ability and genius’, Hill was a talented writer, and worked as an apothecary, botanist, landscape architect and gardener, and also an actor! His main contribution was in the field of botany, but he also wrote on apothecary, medicine, geology and conchology, Thoughts concerning God and Nature, of married life, the art of acting, The Naval History of Britain, an opera, two comedies, novels, and a financially rewarding popular daily paper, “The Inspector”. This latter was to gain him widespread notoriety from his provocative comments on the shortcomings of others – in particular of the Royal Society and its 300 Fellows.

Page Size: 415 x 255mm (16.25 x 10 inches). To Plate Mark: 375 x 295mm (14.75 x 11.5 inches).

Stock Number: apJHh37Price: $150.00