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Treatises with Hand Coloured Drawings
[Montpellier], 1811. Manuscript journal of scientific observations and erudite theories, mainly of botanical and medical interest, as well as personal reflections and autobiographical notes, most likely made by Fulcrand Nicolas Pouzin, a respected botanist, physician, and professor of Botany and Natural History of Medicine, who also served as apothecary at the Faculty of Medicine in Montpellier the year after he graduated from there. 8vo. 956 pages in a fine cursive hand, plus two fold-out hand drawn and coloured illustrations, and a coloured illustrated title page. All text is in French. Half calf over marbled boards titled to spine, a recent binding representative of the period. Volume measures approximately 19 x 23 cm. A philosophical and historical volume penned by a learned man of science, containing a selection of his own works, mostly unpublished, the author's interest and knowledge in the fields of botany and medicine are emphasized throughout. As well as, the dissertation published in Montpellier in 1799 to guide botanists in the Alps, for example, "Lettres sur la Botanique" is the heading for a log of 14 letters, 184 pages combined, written by Fulcrand to an unidentified recipient. A chart outlines the work of botanist Joseph Pitton de Tournefort who made the first definition of the concept of genus for plants. Another chart illustrates certain classifications of species according to Carl Linnaeus. Distinguishing features of plants are also classified and discussed. Medical topics include the anatomy and physiology of the brain, among other things. In a work titled "De la préminence des Sciences sur les lettres" he examines concerns of scholars in his day. Excerpts from select works in the journal: "Mon projet en attendant le printemps est de m'occuper a létude de l'histoire naturelle principalement de la Botanique. Si ce projet peut te plaire... je partagerois avec toi mes études animés pour nos mutuelles observations..." [My project whilst waiting for spring is the study of Natural History, mainly botany. If this project pleases you... I will share my active studies with you for collaborative 409 ] "La Botanique ma chère amie, cette partie de l'histoire naturelle qui s'occupe de la connaissance des plantes est une science d'autant plus précieuse que ses recherches ne tendent qu'a conserver ou a retablir la santé aux hommes... l'objet de la Botanique est immense..." [Botany, my dear friend, the part of natural history that deals with the understanding of plants, is a most valuable science as the research tends to preserve or restore the health of man ...the scope of Botany is immense... page 427 ] Capturing his two main academic interests, he writes a history on the ancient city of Maguelone, its cathedral still standing in remains some ten kilometers from Montpellier, in the Hérault department of southern France. "Notice sur l'ancienne ville de Maguelone", 48 pages in manuscript, and illustrated with a lovely watercoloured sketch drawing and map, concludes with a comment that the region is attractive to botanists, followed by directions for plant collectors seeking a particularly rare specimen. The auto-biographical preface and the journal's content together suggest that the author of this is Fulcrand Nicolas Pouzin (1774-1822), a well-known botanist and physician of Montpellier. Here he mentions joining the army in Egypt at age sixteen [1790] and spending a brief time in Italy. Also in his preface, Fulcrand reveals his propensity for written arts and father's unyielding disapproval. Several of his letters herein are signed Valé presumably his pseudonym. After completing his secondary education and serving briefly in the French Army in Egypt, the writer attempted to establish himself in the arts community in Italy, to no avail. He subsequently succumbed to continue his family's legacy. Fulcrand graduated from Montpellier's Faculty of Medicine in 1793 and was subsequently employed as apothecary there from the "trimestre de germinal ans II" which was the seventh month of the French Republican calendar (1793-1805) originally running from March 21 to April 19. Fulcrand was a professor of botany and the natural history of medicine at the Faculty of Pharmacy (as also was his brother) from its founding in 1803 until his death in 1822 at the young age of forty-eight. His portrait is preserved there today. Fulcrand wrote many scientific treatises, some of which were published by the University of Pharmacy's, and others in the journal of learned scientific societies. In the present volume we find a work titled, "Avis au Botaniste qui doit parcourir les Alpes," presumably being the original draft. Published in 1799, the full title of Fulcrand's treatise was "Avis au Botaniste qui doit parcourir les Alpes: essai présenté et soutenu à l'Ecole de médecine de Montpellier." A member of the learned society for scholars of science, "l'Académie des sciences et lettres de Montpellier" he also wrote papers for its journals. The year after this volume was made, Fulcrand made a study on the effects of natural water sources on human health, an undertaking for which he is widely remembered. His results were published in a treatise in 1812, titled "De l'insalubrité des étangs et des moyens d'y rémédier" [On the unhealthiness of ponds and ways to remedy them]. From a family of high achievers specializing in science and medicine, Fulcrand's father was Montpellier's master apothecary Hugues Pouzin. His brother, six years his senior, was also a leading pharmacist and professor. All three were associated with Montpellier's prestigious Universities of Pharmacy and Medicine. Excerpts from the preface: "A peine avois-je quitté le collège ou j'avois terminé mes études et étois-je rentré dans la maison paternelle que je m'apperçu d'une prédiction marquée... et un Beau matin je dis partir leger d'argent... je fus employé dans l'expédition de l'armée d'Egipte, j'avoir alors seize ans; au retour de l'armée je fus à Paris... enfin j'obtenu une place au fond de l'Italie... deux années étoient apeine écoulées que je me vis déplacé et sans d'autres moyens... fatigué des désagréments... je me décidai a revenir chez mes parents... Je voulus d'abord être medecin... je n'étois pas destiné a être disciple d'esculape, et je le devint de Themis... ce fut alors que je remassai et les papiers qu'en pourtant j'avois caché... et ceux que j'avois conservé dans le cours de mes voyages... dans mes moments de loisir, je les transcrit sans ordre et comme ils se presentoient sous ma main, sur les cahiers qui forment ce volume... un bon nombres des pièces se trouvent avoir étés publiées dans les journaux ou [...] à qui elles etoient addressées, a peine avoit-je achevé... reconçant alors a la manier d'écrire... pour m'occuper de mon nouvel etat, je resolu de faire de ces cahiers un volume sous le titre de Portefeuille Secret pour que si jamais j'ai des enfants ils sachent par le titre seul qu'il y a des choses qu'ils ne peuvent lire dans leurs jeunes âge... Je leurs ordones même après ma mort... de bruler ce volume n'ayant pas le courage de le faire moi même..." [No sooner had I left college where I had finished my studies and I had returned to my father's house, I realized a prediction... One beautiful morning and I departed with very little money ... employed with the expedition of the Egyptian Army, I was then sixteen; returning from the army I was in Paris ... I finally got a place at the heart of Italy ... two years were passed and I was displaced with no other means ... tired of the inconveniences... I decided to return to my parents... I wanted become a doctor... was not destined for the discipline of medicine, and I became Themis [a counselor?]... it was then that I took out the papers that I had hidden... and those which I had kept in the course of my travels... in my spare time I transcribed them in no particular order and as they presented themselves in my hand, the accounts that make up this volume... good numbers of the works were published in journals or... to whom they were addressed; barely had I finished... renouncing the occupation of writing... to take care of my new condition, I resolved to make from my writings a volume titled Secret Pocketbook, so that if I ever children they will know for the title itself that there are things they should not read in their young age... I permit them even after my death... to burn this volume, not having the courage to do it myself...] Further revealing the botanist's little known personal interests and supplementary studies, among them lepidoptera and philosophical history, his volume contains several poems such as Connal et Crimora by Turgot, letters and dissertations covering a myriad of topics, cogitative and factual. A mere glimpse at the subject matter finds reflections on the ideas of ancient philosophers, Greek mythology illustrated in theatre (Ulysses in the court of Alcinous), spiritualism, Italian sonnets translated and analysed in French, specific observations in medicine and natural history including the evolution of botanical science, and an account of an expedition to find a rare butterfly. Other examples include an essay on the Academy of the Floral Games, the most ancient literary institution of the western world, titled "Essai historique sur l'académie des jeux floraux"; a treatise on the life of Anne 'Ninon' de l'Enclos (1620-1705), a French female author, courtesan, freethinker, and patron of the arts; a review on the romance novel Eugène de Rothelin. Excerpts from his expedition to observe butterflies: "16 janvier 1801... Mystères de science... faire voyages dans les etroits et penibles sentiers... sur cette plaine vivante qui environne ton chateau - admire ce chef d'oeuvre de la creation... nous avons sous nos yeaux la livre de la nature dans lequel tout est contenu et qui est ouvert pour tout le monde... ton amie Mlle. de XXXXX qui est folle des papillons des insectes des plantes; elle jouit au moins du plaisir d'être au campagne...Deux jours après mon arrivé je fus la voire, ainsi que je te l'avais promis j'arrivai au chateau... Mlle de XXXXX était deja a battre les champs, son pere avec qui j'ai dé ne partage nullement son enthuiasme pour les productions naturelles... et l'obliger a quitter la place qu'a lui vanter la beauté d'un papillon ou d'un insecte, nous décrire les parties et les habitudes..." [16 January 1801. Mysteries of science... to travel through narrow and distressing paths... on this living plain that surrounds your castle - admire this masterpiece of creation ... we have before our eyes the book of nature in which everything is contained and which is open for everyone... your friend Miss XXXXX who loves butterflies, insects and plants... enjoys at least the pleasure of being in the country... Two days after my arrival, as I had promised you, I was able to visit her ... upon my arrival at the castle Miss XXXXX was already out working the field, her father, with whom I had lunch... does not share her enthusiasm for nature... and forced her to leave the place which extols the beauty of a butterfly or an insect, its parts and habits described...] The Faculty of Pharmacy of Montpellier, part of the University of Montpellier, is devoted to research and education in pharmaceutical sciences and medical biology. In 1792, the College of Apothecaries was suppressed, but most of its members (White, Pouzin, Reboul, Rey, Virenque) reappeared in Year XI (1803) as professors and founders of the School of Pharmacy. [After the French Revolution, Napoleon's Law of 11 April 1803 had facilitated the creation of a separate School of Pharmacy in Montpellier.] La Faculté de Pharmacie de Montpellier, officiellement sciences pharmaceutiques et biologiques, est une unité de formation et de recherche composante de l'université de Montpellier, pour la formation, les enseignements et la recherche en lien avec les sciences pharmaceutiques et la biologie médicale. Après la Révolution française, à la suite d'abus patents, Napoléon promulgua la loi du 11 avril 1803 (21 germinal an XI) qui créa une École spéciale de pharmacie à Montpellier. En 1792 le Collège des apothicaires fut supprimé, mais la plupart de ses membres (Blanc, Pouzin, Reboul, Rey, Virenque) reparaissent en l'an XI (1803) comme professeurs-fondateurs de l'Ecole de Pharmacie. Martin Hugues César Pouzin (1768-1822), était le premier professeur de botanique et d'histoire naturelle des médicaments. Son fils aîné, Roméo Pouzin (1795-1860), devenu aussi professeur de botanique et d'histoire naturelle des médicaments Par son testament du 18 juillet 1859, Roméo Pouzin fait don à l'Ecole de sa bibliothèque, de ses collections scientifiques, de son portrait et de celui de son père. C'est là le premier exemple d'un legs important fait à l'Ecole par l'un de ses professeurs. Fulcrand Nicolas Pouzin's elder brother was Martin Hugues César Pouzin (1768-1822), a pharmacist and also a professor at the Collège des apothicaires de Montpellier [College of Apothecaries, Montpellier], known after the French Revolution as the Faculté de Pharmacie de Montpellier or École de Pharmacie [Faculty of Pharmacy]. In 1793 Martin fought in the French Revolutionary Wars with L'armée des Pyrénées orientales [The Army of the Eastern Pyrenees]. He was the first Professor of Botany and the Natural History of Medicine at the college, since its founding in 1803, and created the school's first botanical garden. Martin's son is François Hugues Roméo Pouzin (1795-1860), a pharmacist, doctor, and professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy at Montpellier, and Director of the Faculty of Pharmacy from 1856 to 1859. In his will dated 18 July 1859, Pouzin donated his library and herbarium to the college, possibly other scientific collections, and the portrait of his father. This was the first important bequest to the college by one of its professors.
      [Bookseller: Voyager Press Rare Books & Manuscripts]
Last Found On: 2016-11-26           Check availability:      PBFA    


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