• The British Arboretum: Trees, Science and Culture in the Nineteenth Century

      Elliott, Paul A.; University of Derby; University of Nottingham (Pickering and Chatto, 2011)
      This study explores the science and culture of nineteenth-century British arboretums, or tree collections. The development of arboretums was fostered by a variety of factors, each of which is explored in detail: global trade and exploration, the popularity of collecting, the significance to the British economy and society, developments in Enlightenment science, changes in landscape gardening aesthetics and agricultural and horticultural improvement.Arboretums were idealized as microcosms of nature, miniature encapsulations of the globe and as living museums. This book critically examines different kinds of arboretum in order to understand the changing practical, scientific, aesthetic and pedagogical principles that underpinned their design, display and the way in which they were viewed. It is the first study of its kind and fills a gap in the literature on Victorian science and culture.
    • The Derby Philosophers: Science and Culture in British Urban Society, 1700-1850

      Elliott, Paul A.; University of Derby (Manchester University Press, 2009)
      The Derby Philosophers focuses upon the activities of a group of Midland intellectuals that included the evolutionist and physician Erasmus Darwin, Rev. Thomas Gisborne the evangelical philosopher and poet, Robert Bage the novelist, Charles Sylvester the chemist and engineer, William George and his son Herbert Spencer, the internationally renowned evolutionist philosopher who coined the phrase ‘survival of the fittest’, and members of the Wedgwood and Strutt families. The book explores how, inspired by science and through educational activities, publications and institutions including the famous Derbyshire General Infirmary (1810) and Derby Arboretum (1840), the Derby philosophers strove to promote social, political and urban improvements with national and international consequences. Much more than a parochial history of one intellectual group or town, this book examines science, politics and culture during one of the most turbulent periods of British history, an age of political and industrial revolutions in which the Derby philosophers were closely involved.
    • Enlightenment, Modernity and Science: Geographies of Scientific Culture and Improvement in Georgian England

      Elliott, Paul A.; University of Derby (I. B. Tauris, 2010)
      Scientific culture was one of the defining characteristics of the English Enlightenment. The latest discoveries were debated in homes, institutions and towns around the country. But how did the dissemination of scientific knowledge vary with geographical location? What were the differing influences in town and country and from region to region? Enlightenment, Modernity and Science provides the first full length study of the geographies of Georgian scientific culture in England. The author takes the reader on a tour of the principal arenas in which scientific ideas were disseminated, including home, town and countryside, to show how cultures of science and knowledge varied across the Georgian landscape. Taking in key figures such as Erasmus Darwin, Abraham Bennett, and Joseph Priestley along the way, it is a work that sheds important light on the complex geographies of Georgian English scientific culture.