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The Natural History of Selborne
— —
Gilbert White Anne Secord
The Natural History of Selborne by Gilbert White at Abbey's Bookshop,

The Natural History of Selborne

Gilbert White Anne Secord


9780198737759

Worlds Classics


Mathematics & Sciences;
Environmentalist thought & ideology;
Wildlife: general interest;
The countryside, country life


Paperback

352 pages

$18.95
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'I was much entertained last summer with a tame bat, which would take flies out of a person's hand.'Gilbert White's Natural History of Selborne (1789) reveals a world of wonders in nature. Over a period of twenty years White describes in minute detail the behaviour of animals through the changing seasons in the rural Hampshire parish of Selborne. He notes everything from the habits of an eccentric tortoise to the mysteries of bird migration and animal reproduction, with the purpose of inspiring others to observe their own surroundings with the same pleasure and attention.

Written as a series of letters, White's book has all the immediacy of an exchange with friends, yet it is crafted with compelling literary skill. His gossipy correspondence has delighted readers from Charles Darwin to Virginia Woolf, and it has been read as a nostalgic evocation of a pastoral vision, a model for local studies of plants and animals, and a precursor to modern ecology. This new edition includes contemporary illustrations, a contextualizing introduction, and an appendix of literary responses to the book.

By:   Gilbert White
Edited by:   Anne Secord
Imprint:   Worlds Classics
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 195mm,  Width: 142mm,  Spine: 16mm
Weight:   246g
ISBN:   9780198737759
ISBN 10:   0198737750
Series:   Oxford World's Classics
Pages:   352
Publication Date:   February 2016
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Gilbert White was born in 1720 in Selborne in Hampshire and went to Oriel College, Oxford, where he became a Fellow in 1743. He took ordination and held a number of curacies in the vicinity of Selborne before finally becoming permanent curate of his birthplace in 1784, a position he held until his death in 1793. In 1751 he started keeping his 'Garden Kalendar', and later the 'Naturalist's Journal' he kept for 25 years. The Natural History of Selborne is based on his correspondence with two distinguished naturalists, Thomas Pennant and Daines Barrington. Anne Secord is an Affiliated Research Scholar in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge. The focus of her research and writing is on popular natural history in nineteenth-century Britain, and on horticulture, medicine, and consumption in the eighteenth century. She is completing a book that explores social class, observation, and skill in nineteenth-century natural history for the University of Chicago Press.


As fresh and conversational in style as correspondence between friends, but elegantly and skilfully executed, it is easy to see why it has inspired writers from Darwin to Virginia Woolf Juanita Coulston, The Lady

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