Historical Ethnobotany: Interpreting the Old Records

Edited by
November 2023
282 pages
  • ISBN978-3-0365-9399-9 (Hardback)
  • ISBN978-3-0365-9398-2 (PDF)

This book is a reprint of the Special Issue Historical Ethnobotany: Interpreting the Old Records that was published in

Biology & Life Sciences
Environmental & Earth Sciences

History is the basis for our interpretation of humanity’s past. Indeed, new developments in digital humanities and the digitalization of archives can place historical sources in a new light. Systematized historical sources allow us to see the practical changes that have occurred over centuries of ethnobotany and analyze (although sometimes solely hypothesize on) the causes of such changes. Studying history helps us to understand the influences on the evolution of local ecological knowledge regarding plant use. In ethnobotany, numerous understudied historical sources are awaiting modern interpretations. Old uses enhanced by the new possibilities offered by technology can enrich our everyday lives. Yet, understanding historical sources, especially in ethnobotany, where several disciplines are involved, is not univocal. Mistakes introduced by misidentified plants or information misinterpreted from old languages can have negative, long-term consequences. This Special Issue provides examples of the critical analyses of various historical sources and insights into ongoing historical and diachronic studies on plant use. This reprint is intended for a broad interdisciplinary audience interested in historical ethnobotany, history of plant studies, and human culture.

  • Hardback
© by the authors
history of ethnobotany; early citizen science studies; history of ethnomedicine; archive data; ethnopharmacology; plant identification; ethnobotany; folk poetry; plant symbolism; ritual plants; useful plants; historical ethnobotany; local ecological knowledge; old herbals; scholarly medicine; Livonia; Courland; duckweed; ethnobotanical convergence; Hildegard von Bingen; Paul Emile Botta; Ritual of the Bacabs; Babylonian Talmud; Kurma Purana; Ono no Komachi; Ho Ching-ming; Cyprus; ethnobotany; Maronites; Mediterranean diet; wild greens; historical ethnobotany; folklore collections; biocultural diversity; Estonian history; folk medicine; medicinal plants; anthropology; arable weed conservation; charismatic species; cultural history; cultural symbols; ethnobotany; human–plants relations; medicinal plants; wild food plants; cultural relict plants; herbal remedies; historical ethnobotany; living biocultural heritage; silvopastoral system; historical ethnobotany; medicinal plants; Central Europe; traditional use; historical ethnopharmacology; ethnobotany; natural dyes; traditional ecological knowledge; textiles; wool; flax; Easter eggs; art; Baroque; floral elements; NE Mediterranean; Pelješac peninsula; sacral heritage; Alps; biocultural diversity; borders; ethnomedicine; historical ethnobotany; local ecological knowledge; mountain regions; ethnobotanical investigation; diachronic comparison; historical sources; medicinal plants; n/a