bioephemera

Via iO9, a Nature News slideshow of natural history engravings by physician Martin Lister’s teenage daughters, who contributed technically accurate engravings of shells to one of his books, the Historiae Conchyliorum:

Historians now believe the pair were the first women to use microscopes to help produce some of their scientific drawings. Anna and Susanna’s place in the history of science is explored in a biography of Martin Lister in preparation by historian Anna Marie Roos of the University of Oxford’s Cultures of Knowledge project. In a recent web post, Roos describes how she stumbled across copperplates engraved by Susanna and Anna that were stored at the university’s Bodleian Library. These plates were used to print the pages of the Historiae Conchyliorum on a home press.

Not quite Thomasina Coverly, but we’re getting there. Go, vintage science grrls!

Links:

Bodleian Library post by Anna Roos
Oxford Cultures of Knowledge project
Nature News story
iO9 post