An exceptionally fine engraving with original hand-coloring from the first edition of A CURIOUS HERBAL - drawn, engraved and painted by Elizabeth Blackwell. Published in London, c. 1739.
This is Plate 467, Dropwort (Filipendula). Filipendula is a genus of 12 species of perennial herbaceous flowering plants in the family Rosaceae, native to the temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Well-known species include Meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria) and Dropwort (Filipendula vulgaris), both native to Europe, and Queen-of-the-forest (Filipendula occidentalis) and Queen-of-the-prairie (Filipendula rubra), native to North America. The species grow to between 0.5–2 m tall, with large inflorescences of small five-petalled flowers, creamy-white to pink-tinged in most species, dark pink in F. rubra. Filipendula fruit are unusual, sometimes described as an indehiscent follicle, or as an achene.
These 18th century herbals are from one of the first English botanical series to be issued with hand-colored plates. Published by Elizabeth Blackwell to free her physician husband from debtor’s prison. Due to the great success and popularity of this enterprise, her husband was indeed released (however he was later beheaded for his part in a political plot to alter the Swedish royal succession).
Plate size is approximately 11 3/4 x 7 7/8 inches.