Finely Illustrated Agricultural Encyclopaedia, 1855.


Bound in contemporary half calf, gilt with black morocco labels and gilt and blind stamped spine decorations with raised bands and marbled boards. Some wear to extremities. Binder's label, W. West, Printer, Stationer and Bookbinder. 43 High St. Maidstone, at top of front paste-down of both vols. Crease at top of title page. Occasional light foxing inside and a few small lower edge tears and folded edges. Vol. 2, 3F4-4G4 and 3L2-3M2 are wormed at foot of page with unimportant loss of a few letters and figures of text on two leaves only. Otherwise a clean interior.





Blackie and Son, Queen Street, Glasgow: South College Street, Edinburgh; and Warwick Square, London.,




In which the theory, the art, and the business of farming, are thoroughly and practically treated. by upwards of fifty of the most eminent practical and scientific men of the day. edited by john c. morton. 2 vols.

Item Description

4to. 7 x 10 inches. Vol. 1, xliv + 1022 pp. [6], a-f2, A-6N4. Vol. 2, [iv] + 1172 pp. [2], A-7I3. Illustrated by 51 wood and steel engraved plates, numbered in one continuous sequence, including 9 double page [n.b.several plates are inserted out of numerical sequence]. Numerous engravings in text, especially of plants and insect pests.


The encyclopaedia edited by Morton is one of the best of the systematic works on agriculture of the nineteenth century. As will be seen from the list of authors, many of the most highly regarded authorities of the age contributed to it:, including John Lindley, Augustus Volcker, John Curtis, C. Wren Hoskyns, James Caird, Hugh Raynbird and John Bright, MP The alphabetical entries are preceded by a Calendar of farm operations and an Introductory essay, Agriculture, by Hoskyns. There are useful sections in the text on agricultural provincialisms (in language) and on local weights and measures. This work is notable for its splendid steel engravings of agricultural implements with some of the new machines of the period, including the latest American reapers and also of farm carts and buildings (both plans and isometric views).
John Chalmers Morton (1821-1888) was a product of the lowland Scottish tradition of agricultural improvement and was the son of John Morton, an agricultural writer and pioneer of soil science. After attendance at the University of Edinburgh, Morton went to assist his father who was agent at Whitfield Example Farm, near Thornbury, Glos. in 1838, when he also joined the newly founded English Agricultural Society, soon to become the Royal Agricultural Society of England. He was founding editor of the Agricultural Gazette. His numerous writings included annual editions of the New Farmer's Almanac and volumes in the Handbooks of the Farm series, preceeded by his important analytical study, the Handbook of Farm Labour (1861, appearing under variant titles until 1887).
A fine set of this important agricultural encyclopaedia from the golden age of Engish farming.

[Stock No. 19923]

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