The New Sylva: A Discourse of Forest and Orchard Trees for the Twenty-First Century


The New Sylva: A Discourse of Forest and Orchard Trees for the Twenty-First Century Authors: , Format: Hardback First Published: Published By: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
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Pages: 400 Language: English ISBN: 9781526640109 Categories: , , , , , , , , , Tags: ,

In 1664, the horticulturist and diarist John Evelyn wrote Sylva, the first comprehensive study of British trees. It was also the world’s earliest forestry book, and the first book ever published by the Royal Society. Evelyn’s elegant prose has a lot to tell us today, but the world has changed dramatically since his day.

Now authors Gabriel Hemery and Sarah Simblet, taking inspiration from the original work, have masterfully created a contemporary version – The New Sylva. The result is a fabulous resource that describes all of the most important species of tree that populate our landscape. Silvologist Gabriel Hemery explains what trees really mean to us culturally, environmentally and economically in the first part of the book.

These chapters are followed by forty-four detailed tree portrait sections that describe the history and the features of trees such as oak, elm, beech, hornbeam, willow, fir, pine, juniper, plane, apple and pear. The pages of The New Sylva are brought to life with truly breathtaking artwork from artist and co-author Sarah Simblet, who captures the delicacy, strength and beauty of the trees through the seasons in 200 exquisite drawings. With an interplay of black and red type on creamy paper, The New Sylva recalls all the charm of traditional bookmaking.

And at a moment when it is vitally important for us to rediscover how to treasure our trees, the time for this visionary, beautiful book is now. This edition comes with illustrated endpapers and a ribbon marker.

Weight1.6 kg





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An excellent successor to Sylva, well written and full of interesting information ... The illustrations are magnificent, pen drawings by the great tree artist Sarah Simblet. She has the rare gift of depicting a recognisable leafless tree, a gift that was denied to artists Poussin and Gainsborough * Oliver Rackham, Spectator * Sumptuous ... exquisite drawings grace almost every spread. The reader will be beguiled into consuming large sections in a single sitting. It's also a book for dipping into. ... planting trees is an affirmation of faith in the future, and this book will inspire new generations of tree planters, just as the original did * Gardens Illustrated * A book that proclaims its virtues with quiet dignity * Sunday Times * Glorious * Sunday Telegraph * Beautiful, useful and inspirational * BBC Wildlife Book of the Month * Exquisite ... eloquently written and beautifully illustrated * The Lady * Gorgeous, precious and important * Resurgence & Ecologist * Unparalleled understanding of our trees * Mail on Sunday * A delight on every page * Evening Standard *

Author Biography

Dr Gabriel Hemery is an English forest scientist (silvologist) and author. He co-founded the tree and forestry charity Sylva Foundation with Sir Martin Wood in 2009. Sarah Simblet is a graphic artist, writer and broadcaster, who teaches anatomical drawing at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art and at the University of Oxford.