S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science

Armitage, Rev Edward (botany)

Born: 17 May 1822, Maidstone, Kent, England.
Died: 22 February 1906, Cheltenham, England.

Edward Armitage was an English clergyman with an interest in botany. He obtained the degrees Bachelor of Arts (BA) at Yorks University College in 1845, and Master of Arts (MA) at Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1848. He was elected a fellow of the Linnaean Society in 1852, but resigned in 1861. In 1853 he visited Natal from the Cape Colony and on 20 December of that year delivered a lecture in Pietermaritzburg to the members of the Natal Society in which he compared the flora of Natal with that of the Cape, family by family. The lecture was published in pamphlet form in Pietermaritzburg in 1854 with the title "Lecture on the botany of Natal". It later formed the basis of an appendix, "Some observations on the botany of Natal", in James Chapman's* Travels in the interior of South Africa... (London, 1868, Vol. 2, pp. 458-463).

Armitage stayed in Natal for only a few months. He was Rector of Croscombe, Dorset, England, from 1858 to 1869. He was probably the same person as Reverend Edward Armitage who published a paper (in Italian) on the flora of Malta in the Nuovo Giornale Botanico Italiano in 1889. However, he was probably not the same person as Edward Armitage who published Lectures on painting (London, 1883), delivered to students of the Royal Academy in London.

List of sources:
Bayer, A.W. Aspects of Natal's botanical history. South African Journal of Science, 1971, Vol. 67, pp. 401-411.

Bayer, A.W. Discovering the Natal flora. Natalia, December 1974, No. 4, pp. 42-48.

Gunn, M. & Codd, L.E. Botanical exploration of southern Africa. Cape Town: Balkema, 1981.

Kerkham, A.S. Southern African botanical literature, 1600-1988. Cape Town: South African Library, 1988.

National Union Catalogue, pre-1956 imprints. London: Mansell, 1968-1980.

Royal Society of London. Catalogue of scientific papers [1800-1900]. London: Royal Society, 1867-1925.

Wyley, C. A bibliography of contemporary writings on the natural history of Natal and Zululand in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Journal of Natal and Zulu History, 1990/1, Vol. 13, pp. 91-110.

Compiled by: C. Plug