Important acquisitions

Every man his own gardener.

Author Abercrombie, John.
Title Every man his own gardener.
Imprint London: Printed for W. Griffin,
Date of Publication 1767
Language English
Notes This book is a rare copy of the first edition of John Abercrombie's most popular work. Abercrombie (1726-1806) from Prestonpans, near Edinburgh was the son of a market gardener, whom he worked for from the age of 14. In 1751 he went to London and worked at Kew Gardens, Leicester House and a host of other noblemens' gardens. At an early age, Abercrombie started the habit of noting down various horticultural observations, which formed the raw material for this book. His name does not appear on the title page or elsewhere in the publication. Instead he had asked his friend, Thomas Mawe, gardener to the Duke of Leeds in return for 20 to prefix his name to the book so that it would sell. It was a huge success and by the seventh edition of 1776, Abercrombie's name appeared on the title page.Its popularity continued for many years, a thirty-fifth edition appearing in 1857. This copy has the ownership inscription of John Lamiman, 1767 and it is possible that he had the book put into a protective chemise, possibly so he could take it out into the garden with him.
Shelfmark RB.s.2727
Reference Sources Henrey, Blanche. British botanical and horticultural literature before 1800. (London, 1975); Oxford Dictionary of National Biography online
Acquired on 13/10/08
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