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Maria Sibylla Merian’s Caterpillar Book
Author: Kay Etheridge
The Flowering of Ecology presents an English translation of Maria Sibylla Merian’s 1679 ‘caterpillar’ book, Der Raupen wunderbare Verwandelung und sonderbare Blumen–Nahrung. Her processes in making the book and an analysis of its scientific content are presented in a historical context. Merian raised insects for five decades, recording the food plants, behavior and ecology of roughly 300 species. Her most influential invention was an 'ecological' composition in which the metamorphic cycles of insects (usually moths and butterflies) were arrayed around plants that served as food for the caterpillars. Kay Etheridge analyzes the 1679 caterpillar book from the viewpoint of a biologist, arguing that Merian’s study of insect interactions with plants, the first of its kind, was a formative contribution to natural history.
A Comprehensive History of Tea from Prehistoric Times to the Present Day
The Tale of Tea is the saga of globalisation. Tea gave birth to paper money, the Opium Wars and Hong Kong, triggered the Anglo-Dutch wars and the American war of independence, shaped the economies and military history of Táng and Sòng China and moulded Chinese art and culture. Whilst black tea dominates the global market today, such tea is a recent invention. No tea plantations existed in the world’s largest black tea producing countries, India, Kenya and Sri Lanka, when the Dutch and the English went to war about tea in the 17th century. This book replaces popular myths about tea with recondite knowledge on the hidden origins and detailed history of today’s globalised beverage in its many modern guises.
Drawings and Descriptions of the Genus Pinus
Author: Aljos Farjon
There has been a steady demand for the first edition of the conifer book PINES, which sold out in 2002. Therefore, a second edition, which is a modest update, was written. The book PINES was never an attempt at monograph in the taxonomic sense. Rather it was an overview with line drawings of the commonly known species of pines, giving concise but essential information on identification, distribution and ecology. Introductory texts explained botanical characteristics of pines and a chapter on classification, one on phylogeny and biogeography, and a glossary, index and short bibliography completed the book. This scope and structure have been maintained in the second edition. It was necessary to make several taxonomic changes, to add or omit a few species, present a new chapter on phylogeny and classification and amend or correct, even expand, some of the information given in the first edition, especially in the species accounts. Conservation aspects have been added to species accounts in a concise format, following IUCN evaluations. The author has maintained the original drawings and made amendments only to correct errors; drawings for additional species have been added in the same style. The book contains a total of 92 drawings and 103 distribution maps. With these amendments the information should have been updated to a satisfactory level, without altering the original format and scope.