Wednesday, 23 October 2013

A library that knows its Worth 

I confess I hadn't heard of Edward Worth, an early eighteenth century Dublin physician with an extensive botanical collection, until a fellow BSBI member sent me this link and the gorgeous image below. It's the title page to a sixteenth century herbal from the Worth Library, Dublin:




I've since been in touch with Dr Elizabethanne Boran, Librarian at the Edward Worth Library and she's been telling me more about Worth and about this year's online exhibition, which features highlights from the botanical collection. 

What a good idea: those of us who can't get over to Ireland just now are offered a free glimpse into a fascinating collection; and any botanist planning a trip to Dublin will be making a note to contact Dr Boran and make an appointment to visit the Worth Library and explore further. The botanical collection is one of several, and I see the website has a page on John Ray, which bodes well - the Worth Library sounds an absolute treasure trove!

The image is of a title page detail from Pietro Andrea Mattioli, Opera quae extant omnia: hoc est, Commentarii in VI. libros Pedacii Dioscoridis Anazarbei de medica materia (Basle, 1598). Click on the image to enlarge it.