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COLLECTION Identifier: arn00017

Chinese plants: 45 drawings in water-color

Forty-five original watercolors of plants mounted on paper. The watercolors may have been produced in Canton. Many bear "M. and J. Lay or J. Whatman” watermarks dated 1815 to 1819. Watercolors include butterflies, moths, or other possible pollinators. Latin names have been added in pencil.


  • approximately 1815-1819

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is available by appointment for research. Researchers must register and provide two forms of valid photo identification. Please contact for additional information.


0.5 linear feet (1 flat oversize box, 1 shared oversize box) ; Plates measure 33 x 41 cm. Binding measures 36 x 42 cm.


The watercolors are arranged alphabetically by latin name. Plate numbers written in pencil in top right corner and may correspond to original order.


The provenance of this collection is unknown.

Related Materials

Other related material at the Botany Libraries, Harvard University Herbaria: Coloured botanical drawings by a Chinese artist; Paintings of Chinese fruits, flowers, and vegetables, natural size by native artists.

Processing Information

Processing Information Plates removed from original binding, interleaved and rehoused in a box. Moved from Fol. 139.4 An8.

Collection title taken from note on end-sheet and collection dates based on watermarks. Title on spine of original binding: Chinese plants. Most plates include plant name written in pencil. Corrected and supplied plant names appear in brackets.
Link to catalog
Chinese plants: 45 drawings in water-color, approximately 1815-1819: A Guide.
Archives, Arnold Arboretum Library, Harvard University Herbaria
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Botany Libraries, Arnold Arboretum Library (Cambridge), Harvard University Repository

Harvard University Herbaria
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