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Birds, Bugs, and Plants

Birds, Bugs, and Blooms: Observing the Natural World in the 18th Century

Through August 2017

Explore the growth of interest in natural history during the 18th century through period illustrations. With the settlement of the New World, many Englishman and colonists became fascinated by the plants and animals that were native to the region. These gentlemen on both sides of the Atlantic exchanged specimens and ideas and sponsored the avid collecting and documenting of birds, bugs and plants. Gardens, carefully planned and laid out, furthered the studies and enjoyment both privately and publicly. Beautiful watercolors, hand-colored prints and period books illustrate this story.

In the Shirley H. and Richard D. Roberts Gallery.