Record

Reference numberMS/943
LevelItem
TitleNotebook on botany and chemistry, by an unknown author
Date1855[?]
DescriptionNotebook, sold in Dublin by John Chambers Junior, Capel Street. Possibly belonging to a medical student. The name W. S. Harrison[?], possibly the owner, is written on the marbled endpapers along with other notations, some of which are illegible. One annotation on the endpapers reads 'commenced with Dr R A Fraser[?], 29th August 1855[?]' suggesting perhaps the notes relate to a course of tuition or study. The subject matter of the notes is (1) basic botany, including the structure and classification of plants, and (2) chemistry, including properties of various compounds, composition or 'recipes' for compounds such as iodides and linament, notes on chemical reactions and antidotes. Experiments recorded include distillation of alcohol and extraction of compounds from kelp. The subjects recorded suggest a focus on substances with medical applications. In this period botany and chemistry would have been essential components of study for a medical qualification and many private medical schools operated in Dublin, but no medical professional by the name of W S Harrison appears on the UK medical registers as qualifying in Dublin in this period.

Includes illustrations of plant structure, leaf shape etc. and of chemical apparatus as well as formulae and tables.

Approximately one third of the pages have writing in one orientation and the remainder are written the other way up, requiring that the notebook be turned 180 degrees to be read from that point. There is no apparent shift in the subject matter coinciding with the chnage of orientation. There are no dates given with the exception of the annotation on the endpaper.
Extent1 notebook comprising 66 leaves
FormatManuscript
Physical descriptionSmall notebook with worn brown leather covers, broken metal clasp (one half missing) and blue and red marbled end papers. Lined blue notepaper inside. Sewn binding, spine detatched from front board.
Dimensions16.5cm x 10.5cm
Access statusOpen
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