SG - The Ambonese Wilderness
After last week you might agree Georg Rumphius (1627-1702) deserves a place in the pantheon of plant science. A large part of his Ambonese Herbal is devoted to plants that provide nuts, fruits, tubers, spices, raisin and timber, but not solely.
About The Ambonese Wilderness
Like his predecessors and contemporaries in botany Rumphius focuses mainly on useful plants. A large part of his Ambonese Herbal is devoted to plants that provide nuts, fruits, tubers, spices, raisin and timber, but not solely. But he was also the first European to venture into the wilderness to describe plants out of pure interest. On his many expeditions he explores the lowland rainforests of Ambon, climbs the mountains, and wades through the mangroves. What he encounters boggles his mind: ferns as tall as trees, glow-in-the-dark mushrooms, climbing pitcher plants and epiphytic orchids clinging to branches of host trees. But is the Ambonese wilderness really as wild as Rumphius’ imagines it to be?
About Norbert Peeters
Norbert Peeters (MA) studied archaeology and philosophy at Leiden University. Together with professor Wouter Oudemans he wrote Plantaardig - Vegetatieve filosofie (2014). His debut, Botanische revolutie: de plantenleer van Charles Darwin appeared in 2016, followed by an edited volume he worked on together with Tessa van Dijk entitled Darwins engelen: vrouwelijke wetenschappers in de tijd van Charles Darwin (2018), and recently his new book Rumphius' Kruidboek - Verhalen uit de Ambonese flora (2020) was published. Norbert is also a producer for Studium Generale Leiden, and a PhD student at the Institute of Philosophy (Leiden University).