On this website you will find information regarding the Herbarium that belonged to George Clifford (1685 - 1760). Clifford, the son of an English merchant and govenor, had a great fascination for the natural world. On his estate 'De Hartecamp' he owned a large collection of living and dried plants, living and stuffed animals, and minerals. In 1735 Clifford gave the task of properly organising and maintaining his impressive collections to a young but highly promising academic by the name of Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), ). Linnaeus described Clifford's extensive collection of dried plants, amongst others, in his famous work Hortus Cliffortianus (1737).
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What is so special about the Clifford collection today?
There are a number of reasons that make this collection so special. The herbarium collections were for the outset of great academic importance because of the link with Linnaeus and his Hortus Cliffortianus. > Read more.
Another reason which relates to these collections is the use of ornamentation. Many of the collections are decorated with ornamental vases, labels (cartouches) and ribbons. This was done in such a way as to make it appear that the dried plants were standing in a vase. These ornamentations were only found in 18th century collections of Dutch origin. The occurrence of such ornamentations on herbarium specimens can also be used to date collections and identify the creator of a particular collection. > Read more.
Moreover this herbarium - and the history of its origin - provides an insight into the academic and cultural-historic role of the Netherlands in the 18th century. > Read more
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What can be found on this website?
Apart from providing information about Clifford and Linnaeus and the results of their collaborative work - the Hortus Cliffortianus - one can search for information concerning specific collections. Moreover it is possible to browse the collections themselves. Background information regarding the origin of the collections, the meaning of all the notes and comments that can be found on the collections and the current importance of the Clifford collection can be found under the link to 'collections'.
Furthermore there is a separate section dedicated to the specific decorations, the ornamentations.
In the section 'who is who' it is possible to find quickly the specific role that each person played in the history of the collections.
Currently it is only possible to view one part of the collection - the remainder will follow during the course of 2007.
Tips on using this website
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