Monday, May 18, 2009

Renowned Botanists honoured by Ascension Island

This set of 4 stamps was issued by Ascension Island on 28th August, 2008.
The botanists featured on the stamps were all eminent and learned figures of their time. As a measure of respect their fellow scholars would often accord them the honour of naming a new genus of plants after them.

35p - Valerius Cordus was a German apothecary whose detailed botanical studies advanced pharmacology in the early 16th century. The genus Cordia commemorates his name. Cordia sebestena is known as the Geiger Tree.

40p - Born in Warwickshire Nehemiah Grew practiced medicine in London where he became famous for his work on plant anatomy. The genus Grewia, which commemorates his name, is native to tropical Africa, Asia and Australia. The common names for Grewia occidentalis are Starflower and Four Corners.

50p - The French botanist, Charles Plumier, after whom the genus Plumeria was named, was born in Marseilles. Plumeria rubra is perhaps more familiar to people as Frangipani or Pagoda or Temple Tree.

£2 - Carl Peter Thunberg was born in Sweden and went on to study medicine at Uppsala University, where he also became a pupil of Linnaeus. The genus of tropical plants, Thunbergia, is named after him. Thunbergia grandiflora is known as Bengal Clockvine or Bengal Trumpet.

Catalogue numbers to be updated at a later date.

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