Remarkable Plants That Shape Our World

Hardcover | October 5, 2014

byHelen Bynum, William Bynum

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Imagine a typical morning--munching on a bowl of cereal, sipping coffee, dressing for the day, riding to work. Every moment of this common routine draws on the power of plants, and the centuries of development that brought wheat, coffee beans, cotton, and rubber--among many others--into our daily lives.

Remarkable Plants celebrates the wonder and utility of the green kingdom, taking a detailed look at how plants have shaped our world. It focuses on eighty key species and richly explores their history, highlighting their importance and bringing to light surprising stories. Organized thematically into eight sections, the book starts with “Transformers” (including rice, beans, olives) and moves through sections such as “Heal and Harm” (poppy, aloe, strychnos) and “Revered and Adored” (lotus, frankincense, rose). Each species is introduced with its common and scientific names and followed by an exploration of its cultural, historical, botanical, and symbolic associations. Hundreds of botanical illustrations show full plants as well as highlight distinctive leaves, blooms, and fruits.

Rooted in one of the world’s most important and renowned temples of greenery, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Remarkable Plants is a symbiotic balance of science and art that will open readers’ eyes to the deep influence of the natural world on our modern one.

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Imagine a typical morning--munching on a bowl of cereal, sipping coffee, dressing for the day, riding to work. Every moment of this common routine draws on the power of plants, and the centuries of development that brought wheat, coffee beans, cotton, and rubber--among many others--into our daily lives.Remarkable Plants celebrates the ...

William F. Bynum is professor emeritus of the UCL Centre for the History of Medicine in London. Helen Bynum is a historian of science and medicine. Together they have edited Great Discoveries in Medicine and Dictionary of Medical Biography.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:240 pages, 9.75 × 7.75 × 1.1 inPublished:October 5, 2014Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022620474X

ISBN - 13:9780226204741

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"This beautifully produced volume reminds me of a Ken Burns video production. . . . Most of the images in this book are black and white or sepia and accompanied by engaging, authoritative yet accessible knowledge. The images are a gallery of exquisite botanical illustrations."