Ref NoMS/289
TitleMicroscopic Animals - John Ellis
AdminHistoryJohn Ellis FRS (1714-1776) was a British linen merchant and naturalist. He was the first to publish a written description of the Venus flytrap in a pamphlet entitled "Directions for Bringing over Seeds and Plants from the East Indies and Other Distant Countries" (1770). He imported numerous American seeds and was particularly interested in the problems connected with transportation of plants and seeds. The "Natural History of Many Uncommon and Curious Zoophytes", written with Daniel Solander, was posthumously published in 1786. Ellis was a correspondent of Carl Linnaeus who described him as "a bright star of natural history".
DescriptionA quarto manuscript book with limp cardboard covers, and paper label 'Microscopic Animals John Ellis, J. E. S.'[James Edward Smith]. The greater number of the microscopical sketches are on separate slips of paper pasted into the book. Plant drawings are also included.

Inside cover. Seeds of the Conferva Ciliata among the Cilia or little hairs of the joints [Four drawings.] Seed vessel of the the Illicium. [Drawings.]
1r. [Printed prospectus of the Memoirs on Indigo; author not mentioned. "London, 1775.]
1r &v. [Microscopical drawings.]
2r. [Microscopical drawings. July 8, 16, September 2.
2v. [Microscopical drawings: Animalcle in pond water from Paddington.
3r. Swan Animalcule Wheat Stra 17 September 1770.
3v. [Drawing of worm, etc.] Rotalarius Rapax. [Drawings] Volvox Monoculus.
4r. [Microscopical drawings dated 1771.]
4v. [Blank.]
5r. [Microscopical drawings dated 1770.]
5v. [Blank.]
6r. [Microscopical drawings dated 1771.]
6v. [Microscopical drawings undated, verso of one has sketch map showing Mobile Bay.]
7r. Volvox vorax. The Glutton [Drawings, undated.]
7v. [Blank.]
8r. This worm is common in the Thames Mud near the Temple Stairs, where the whole surface of the Mud appears red...[Drawings.]
8v. [Blank.]
9r. [Microscopical drawings dated 1772.]
9v. [Drawing in red ink. Opuntia.]
10r. [Female cochineal insect.]
10v. [Male & female cochineal insects.]
11r. [The same.This was loose in notebook 2.]
11v. [Microscopical drawings, undated.]
12r. [Male and female cochineal insects. This was loose in notebook 1.]
12v. [Microscopical drawings, undated. Several pollens & Volvox Globator.]
13r. August 17, 1770 Polype Louse. [Drawings.]
13v. In barely straw that was full of black spots. [Verso: Business card of an organ-maker near Gray's Inn.]
14r. [Microscopical drawings, undated.]
14v. Wheat straw 12 September 1770.
15r. [Microscopical drawings, undated.]
15v. [The same, blank leaf.]
16r. [Microscopical drawings dated 1770. On portion of quarto letter paper with a draft letter to (?) the President of the Premium Society (Society for the Enouragement of Arts, c. 1756.]
16v. Animal in scarlet geranium.
17r. A sea production of the animal kind brought from the River St Lawrence Dr Russel. [Drawing, removed from cover of notebook 2, where it was becoming damaged.]
17v. [Blank.]
18r. Theobroma Cacao Lin; Spe: p.1100. The flower of the chocolate [sic.] nut dissected. [Fine drawings. From miscellaneous. MSS packet, Theobroma.]
18v. [Double leaf from a small pocket book. p1: Drawings including scale from wing or butterfly or moth, p 2.]
19r. [Blank.]
19v. [Drawings of (?) and insect:] Pediculus Asellus.
20r-22r. [Blank.]
24r. [Ellis's original drawings for plate in Phil. Trans. on Salts in Infusions of Hempseed.]
24v. [Blank.]
24a r. [Blank.]
24a v. [Water-colour drawing of the Dionoea Muscipula [Venus Fly Trap]. Quarto from which page was engraved.]
25r. [Pencil drawing of the Dionoea Muscipula [Venus Fly Trap] with note by Ellis and his drawings of the dissected flowers. Also Ellis's note of charges in connection with his publication.]
25v. [Blank.]
26r. [Further pencil drawings of the Dionoea [Venus Fly Trap]]
26v-27r. [Geometrical drawing of the Tangents & Secants of the Circle.]
27v. Coffee flowers by Taylor including note 'Blossoms of Coffee'. [Drawing. Also dissection of coffee flower & berry.]
28r. Gardenia dissected [drawings] Common jasmine [drawings] [Drawing of a "stove".] Hemp seed in river water since 25 February to 17 May 1769. [Drawings.]
28v. & inside cover. [Drawings by J.E. of Dissections of the Cacao.]
Date1769-1772
LevelItem
Extent1 volume
LanguageEnglish
Publn_NoteA full transcription of the letters is available in "Part IV: Calendar of the Ellis Manuscripts (The Correspondence and Miscellaneous Papers of John Ellis, FRS)" by Spencer Savage.
Creator NameEllis, John
Access_StatusOpen
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