Attractive botanical prints of plants representing horticultural achievements of the late Victorian era. L’Illustration Horticole was a collaborative effort of the great horticulturists and field botanists of the day. The series encompassed full-page chromolithographs, as well and black-and-white woodblock illustrations, of newly discovered or cultivated species, together with discussions of horticultural history, and accounts of the major expositions and scholarly works.
The prints we offer include studies of carnations, begonias, dahlias, gladiolas, chrysanthemums, orchids, calla lilies, azaleas, passion flowers, palms, foliage plants, fruits, a carnivorous pitcher plant, and many others. Many are arranged as decorative bouquets, and others are shown growing in natural habitat. We feature here nearly every print from 1887 to 1893, when L’Illustration Horticole was published monthly by Jean Jules Linden and his son Lucien in the more desirable folio edition (full sheets, not folded). These are considerably larger than the octavo editions (c. 1854-86, 1894-96). Each folio edition was published as a fascicle in paper wraps and generally featured two chromolithograph botanical prints. The full title of the folio series is L’Illustration Horticole: Revue Mensuelle Des Plantes Les Plus Remarquables des Introductions Nouvelles et des Faits le Plus Intéressants de l’Horticulture Internationale [Horticulture Illustrated: The Monthly Journal of the most Remarkable Plants, New Introductions, and the most Interesting Facts of International Horticulture.]
The predecessor publication, L’Illustration Horticole: Journal Spécial Des Serres et Des Jardins, was founded in 1854 by Ambroise Verschaffelt, a third-generation Belgian nurseryman, in Ghent, Belgium, and edited for its first 16 years by Charles Lemaire, a prominent botanist and professor. In 1869, Jean Jules Linden, the renowned horticulturist, orchid grower and collector, purchased Verschaffelt’s nursery and took over directorship of the publication. In 1870, he replaced Lemaire with the French horticulturist Edouard André as editor and changed the name to L’Illustration Horticole: Revue Mensuelle Des Serres et Des Jardins, beginning with volume 17. The name was changed again in the 1880s to L’Illustration Horticole: Revue Mensuelle Des Plantes Les Plus Remarquables. From the mid 1880s, orchidologist Émile Rodigas served as editor. This periodical continued until 1896, after which it was combined with the Lindens’ Le Journal des Orchidées [The Journal of Orchids], also edited by Rodigas, into a new periodical, Le Semaine Horticole [Horticultural Week].
Jean Jules Linden was an influential horticulturist and publisher, especially in the realm of orchids. Born in Luxembourg, he attended the University of Brussels. At age 19, he was selected for a government-sponsored botanical expedition to South and Central America, and traveled there until 1844 collecting new orchid species. From 1845, he worked as a plant dealer in Luxembourg and Ghent, eventually founding the nursery Horticulture Internationale in Brussels, where he imported and introduced new plants, including over 1,100 species of orchids. In addition to orchids, Linden is credited with popularizing begonias, camellias, and palm trees to Europe, introducing various species there. During his travels in South America he observed the growing conditions of the tropical plants, enabling him to succeed in cultivating them when he returned to Belgium. His son Lucien Linden eventually joined the business.
In 1885, Jean Linden began directing Lindenia: Iconographie des Orchidées, co-edited by Lucien and orchidologist Émile Rodigas, and published by F. Meyer-Van Loo, and later Eug. Vanderhaeghen, in Ghent. This publication continued until 1906. Lucien Linden also edited Le Journal des Orchidées: Guide Pratique de Culture, published by Eug. Vanderhaeghen in Ghent from about 1890. This periodical was combined with the Lindens’ L’Illustration Horticole after 1896 to form Le Semaine Horticole.
Pieter De Pannemaeker was a prolific watercolor artist and printmaker active in Ghent, Belgium, in the 19th century. He specialized in landscapes and botanicals and contributed to many periodicals and publications when Belgium was the leading center for botanical publishing. His credits include art and chromolithographs for Jean Jules Linden’s publications Lindenia and L’Illustration Horticole.
Condition: Generally very good, the colors bright, the paper with the usual light overall toning, some minor scattered wear and soft creases.
Bénézit, E. Dictionnaire critique et documentaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs. France: Librairie Gründ, 1966. Vol 6, p. 503. (De Pannemaeker)
Ceulemans, Nicole. “Jean Linden.” JeanLinden.info. 2000. http://www.jeanlinden.info/ (11 May 2005).
Erickson, Robert F. “Charles Antoine Lemaire.” August 2002. Missouri Botanical Garden. http://ridgwaydb.mobot.org/mobot/rarebooks/author.asp?creator=Lemaire,%20Charles%20Antoine (8 July 2003).
“Iconographie Descriptive des Cactées.” Missouri Botanical Garden. 5 May 2003. http://ridgwaydb.mobot.org/mobot/rarebooks/title.asp?relation=QK495F210L46 (8 July 2003).
Lhomme, Michel. Annuaire et catalogue 2005. Liège, Belgium: Chambre Professionnelle Belge de la Librairie Ancienne et Modern, 2005. pp.78-79. http://www.clam-bba.be/clam_2005.pdf (19 May 2005).
“Lucien Linden.” Digital Orchid Library, Michigan State Library. http://digital.lib.msu.edu/projects/orchids/search.cfm?AuthorID=152 (19 May 2005).
Nissen, Claus. Die Botanische Buchillustration: ihre Geschichte und Bibliographie. Stuttgart:1951-66. 2254. (21).
Sitwell, Sacheverell. Great Flower Books, 1700-1900. New York: The Atlantic Monthly Press, 1990. p.159.