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NICHOLAS

EDWARD

BROWN.

Mr. N . E. BROWN was born at Redhill, Surrey, on July 11, 1849, and was educated at the Grammar School of the neighbouring town of Reigate. On leaving school he was engaged by Mr. Wilson Saunders to act as Curator of his museum at Reigate. I t may be mentioned that thirty years ago Mr. Saunders was one of the leading naturalists in England and one of the most liberal of amateur horticulturists. His garden contained one of the most famous private collections in the country. In Feb. 1873, Mr. Brown was appointed Assistant in the herbarium at K e w ; with the exception of Mr. Hemsley, his service in this establishment dates back farther than that of any of his colleagues. I n 1874, he commenced lecturing to the young gardeners on geographical botany, and thus began the relationship with the garden staff which has lasted thirty years and which has made him, to past Kewites, the bestknown member of the botanical staff at Kew, now that Mr. Baker has retired. Quite two-thirds of the members of the Guild must have attended his lectures, and to all of them his portrait will be welcome. Among his contemporaries, Mr. Brown is esteemed as a patient, acute, hardworking botanist. The late Dr. Reichenbach used to speak of him as " my lynx-eyed little friend." H e is a recognised authority on Cacti, Aroids, Asclepiads, and on Cape plants generally. H e is the author of the greater part of Vol. xii. of Syme's English Botany and of the supplement to that work so far as yet published. H e has elaborated several Natural Orders for the two great African Floras now being issued under the editorship of the Director, viz. The Mora of Tropical Africa and Flora Capensis. His work, Stapelim Barklyanm, forms a part of Vol. xx. of Hooker s Icones Plantarum. H e has, besides, contributed to various scientific journals, especially to the Transactions and Journal of the Linnean Society. H e was elected A.L.S. in 1879. Horticulture also owes something to the labours of Mr. Brown. From 1876 to 1886 he compiled the annual lists of new plants in Hogg's Gardeners' Tear Book, and when that publication ceased, he for some years prepared similar lists for the Kew Bulletin. H e has had a hand in the building up of that useful work Johnson's Gardeners' Dictionary, and for many years has contributed descriptions of new plants, etc. to the Gardeners' Chronicle. Mr. Brown belongs to that type of scientific man—now, perhaps, a somewhat old-fashioned type—who is content to work for the cause rather than for his own gain and advancement. Notoriety has no charm for him. The Director has said (Journal, 1893, p. 4) that " the " uniform tradition which has animated every member of the Kew Staff " from top to bottom is to work self-sacrificingly for Kew rather than " for himself. Officials and employes arrive and pass away : the insti" tution remains, and grows in usefulness, in strength, and in beauty. " All who have had a hand in the work are content that that should be " their record." To no one do these words more justly apply than to Mr. N. E. Brown. P2

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