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The Illustrated Natural History of Selborne

Gilbert White


More than two centuries after its first publication, this pioneering work still makes essential reading for naturalists, ecologists, conservationists and lovers of English literature and the English countryside

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Almost 300 editions and reissues of The Natural History of Selborne testify to its the lasting and universal appeal, but none before has been so beautifully and fittingly illustrated. Gilbert White’s painstaking study of the fauna and flora of his native parish, Selborne in Hampshire, first appeared in 1789 and has delighted and inspired generations of readers ever since. His regular correspondence, beginning in 1767, with two distinguished naturalists forms the basis of The Natural History of Selborne, which was published in the form of his letters to them.

The fascination of the book lies in the magic of its prose and the vividness of its description, which have earned it the distinction of being the only work on natural history to have received equal acclaim as a masterpiece of English literature. To complement the text, 124 colour plates have been faithfully reproduced from the hand-coloured engravings of Gilbert White’s contemporaries, giving an invaluable extra dimension to this most captivating of books.

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'Would make the perfect seasonal gift for anyone who wants to shake off the winter blues and stray out into the spring fields and woods'

'A bibliographic treat, both editorially and pictorially … a book of authority and charm'
House & Garden

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback with flaps

Size: 22.0 x 15.5 cm

Extent: 256 pp

Illustrations: 124

Publication date: 13 April 2004

ISBN: 9780500284780

About the Author

Gilbert White (1720-1793) was a pioneering English naturalist and ornithologist. He remained unmarried and a curate all his life. He is best known for his Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne.

List of Contributors

Ronald Davidson-Houston, June E. Chatfield