Article ID: CBB660785500

'For the Sciences Migrate, Just Like People': The Case of Botanical Knowledge in the Early Modern Iberian Empires (2022)


In his writings, Francis Bacon emphasized the interrelatedness between the migration of people and knowledge, arguing that Europeans of his time had surpassed the greatest civilizations because of their ability to traverse the world freely. Concentrating on Spanish observers who investigated New Spain's flora, this article bridges theory and practice by examining the Iberian roots of Bacon's views. The article examines scientific approaches for acquiring bioknowledge by Iberians who specialized in European medicine, including Francisco Hernández, Juan de Cárdenas and Francisco Ximénez. While the article recognizes the contribution of travellers and expatriates to Spain's bioprospecting project, it also points to the ways in which the limitations of the transfer of botanical information was acknowledged and discusses its meaning. By presenting the complexities in the communication of knowledge, I argue, naturalists in the colonies could highlight their unique vantage point in relation to "armchair" specialists in the metropole.

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Authors & Contributors
Sánchez, Antonio
Heer, Esther Schmid
Klein, Nikolaus
Folch, Christine
Oberholzer, Paul
Brendecke, Arndt
Terrae Incognitae
Tapuya: Latin American Science, Technology and Society
Rinascimento: Rivista dell'Istituto Nazionale di Studi sul Rinascimento
Osiris: A Research Journal Devoted to the History of Science and Its Cultural Influences
Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage
History of the Human Sciences
Tinta da China
University of California, San Diego
Walter de Gruyter
University of Pittsburgh Press
University of Pennsylvania Press
Univ. Chicago Press
Spain, colonies
Knowledge circulation
Mutis, José Celestino
Bruno, Giordano
Time Periods
17th century
16th century
18th century
Early modern
19th century
20th century, early
South America
South Africa
Jesuits (Society of Jesus)
Manila Observatory (Philippines)

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