Grew 1682

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Grew, Nehemiah. The Anatomy of Plants. 1682.

Philosophical History of Plants

has separate pagination from books below

"To be Copartner in the Secrets of Divine Art. That which were very diserable, unless we should think it impertinent for us to design the Knowing of That, which God hath once thought fit to Do." (3, paragraph 5)
"Again, it may frequently conduct our minds to the consideration of the State of Animals; as whether there are not divers material Agreements betwixt them both; and what they are." (4, paragraph 8)

comparison "betwixt the Parts of several Plants, and the several Parts of one. And here again, either betwixt any Two of the Parts, or any One of them, and the Whole besides, or all the rest put together" (7, paragraph 13)

"So, it is not, simply, the Knowledge of many things, but a multifarious Copulation of them in the Mind, that becomes prolifick of further Knowledge." (8, paragraph 16)
"For although Men do everywhere with frequent pleasure, behold the Outward Elegancies of Plants; yet the Inward Ones, which, generally, are as Precise and Various as the Outward; we see, how usual it is, for the beholding of These, to be omitted by them." (8-9, paragraph 17)

Book I: The Anatomy of Plants Begun


"I hope your pardon, if while you are holding That best of Books in one Hand, I here present some Pages of that of Nature into your other: Especially since Your Lordship knoweth very well, how excellent a Commentary This is on the Former; by which, in part, GOD reads the World his own Definition, and their Duty to him."

Book II: The Anatomy of Roots

dedicated to Lord Brouncker

"I have already prepared the Soil, and made some PLantation: what remaineth behind, and the Vintage of the whole, will depend much upon the continued influence of Your Beams: for how unpromising soever the Stock may be; yet the Fruit cannot but be somewhat matured, upon which You are pleased to shine."

Part I is the anatomy; Part II begins with defense of God's role in philosophy as prime mover / first cause; appeals to the watchmaker analogy of mechanistic philosophy in paragraph 5

Book III: The Anatomy of Trunks

also dedicated to Brouncker

again, Part I is an anatomy; Part II continues the tradition of Book II by using the anatomy to show the utility and purpose of these structures, particularly the motions of sap

Part II, Chapter VI, final chapter, shows "the Nature of Timber or Trunks, as they serve for mechanick Use"

Book IV: The Anatomy of Leaves, Flowers, Fruits and Seeds

Four Parts (Leaves, Flowers, Fruits, Seeds), each with a separate title page and heading, and individual chapters

dedicated to Robert Boyle; claims Boyle insisted tha the give "some Examples of the Mechanisme of Nature"

sexual reproduction in plants, Part II, Chapter V, Paragraph 9: "And that these Particles, only by falling on the Uterus, should communicate to it or to the Sap therein, a Prolifick Virtue; it may seem the more credible, from the manner wherein Coition is made by some Animals; as by many Birds, where there is no Intromission, but only an Adosculation of Parts: and so in many Fishes. Niether in others, doth the Penis ever enter any further than the Neck of the Womb. Nor doth perhaps the Semen it self: or if it doth, it can by no means be thought, bodily or as to its gross Substance, to enter the Membranes, in which every Conception, or the liquor intended for it, before any Coition, is involved; but only some subtle and vivifick Effluvia, to which the visible Body of the Semen, is but a Vehicle. And the like Effluvia may be very easily transfused from the above said Particles into the Seed-Case or Womb of a Plant."

Part II, Chapter V, Paragraph 10: "If any one shall require the similitude to hold in every Thing; he would not have a Plant to resemble, but to be, an Animal."


Has its own title page and dedication to Lord Brouncker; seems to be new book, but running title still reads "Book IV" until Chapter 3 of the first lecture; then switches to "Lect. I"

Lecture I: On Mixtures

  • "And as for a Sea-Salt, that I might Imitate Nature for the making thereof, I consider'd, That the said Salt is nothing else but that of Animals and Vegetables, freed from its true spirit and sulpher, and some Saline particles, specifically Animal or Vegetable, together with them. For both Animal and Vegetable Bodies being continually carried by all Rivers into the Sea; and many likewise by Shipwrack, and divers other ways immersed therein: theya re at last corrupted, that is, there Compounding parts are opened and resolved." (234)

Lecture II: Experiments in Consort of the Luctation Arising from the Affusion of several Menstruums Upon all sorts of Bodies

Lecture III: An Essay of the Various Proportions Wherein Lixivial Salt is found in Plants

Lecture IV: A Discourse Concerning the Essential and Marine Salts of Plants

Lecture V: A Discourse of the Colours of Plants

  • can "bring even Natures Art of Painting, in a great part, into our own power" by mixing colorants into soil, water (278)

Lecture VI: A Discourse of the Diversities and Causes of Tasts Chiefly in Plants

Lecture VII: Experiments in dissolving Salts in Water