A 17th Century Dutch Botanical Engraving from "Hortus Indicus Malabaricus"
by Hendrik Adriaan van Rheede Tot Draakestein
Dimensions: 25 1/2 inches x 21 1/2 inches
Rheede was governor of the Dutch colony of Malabar on the south-west coast of India from 1669 to 1676 and from 1684 the chief representative of the Dutch East India Company in India. When not occupied by official duties Rheede was an enthusiastic botanist and investigator of Indian sub-tropical flora. He compiled this work with the help of several Dutch officials, an Italian Catholic missionary Father Mattheus à St. Joseph (who did many of the drawings),a Protestant missionary, native doctors and princes. The engravings were done by B.Stoopendael. Once completed, the works were sent back to Holland where the botanists Jan Commelin and Arnold Steyn added notes and published the works between 1678 - 1693.
The Hortus Indicus is the first comprehensive work of the flora of the East Indies containing illustrations of a great number of tropical and sub-tropical plants and fruits classified in Latin, Sanskrit, Arabic and Malayam.
One of a kind, it was, and still is, considered a major reference of work for botanists and herbalists studying the flora of South Asia.
The engravings are sandwiched between two sheets of glass and are framed within an ivory resin frame.
Hortus Malabaricus/Hendrik A. Van Rheede tot Draakestein. Annotated English edition by K.S. Manilal.Hortus Malabaricus/Hendrik A. Van Rheede tot Draakestein