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The Resource Gods and goddesses in the garden : Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants, Peter Bernhardt

Gods and goddesses in the garden : Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants, Peter Bernhardt

Gods and goddesses in the garden : Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants
Gods and goddesses in the garden
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Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants
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Peter Bernhardt
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Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants
"In Gods and Goddesses in the Garden, botanist Peter Bernhardt reveals the rich history and mythology that underlie the origins of many scientific plant names. Unlike other books about botanical taxonomy that take the form of heavy and intimidating lexicons, Bernhardt's account comes together in a series of interlocking stories. Each chapter opens with a short version of a classical myth, then links the tale to plant names, showing how each plant "resembles" its mythological counterpart with regard to its history, anatomy, life cycle, and conservation. You will learn, for example, that as our garden acanthus wears nasty spines along its leaf margins, it is named for the nymph who scratched the face of Apollo. The shape-shifting god, Proteus, gives his name to a whole family of shrubs and trees that produce colorful flowering branches in an astonishing number of sizes and shapes." "Amateur and professional gardeners, high school teachers and professors of biology, botanists and conservationists alike will appreciate this book's entertaining and informative entry to the otherwise daunting field of botanical names. Engaging, witty, and memorable, Gods and Goddesses in the Garden transcends the genre of natural history and makes taxonomy a topic equally at home in the classroom and at cocktail parties."--Jacket
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index present
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non fiction
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  • dictionaries
  • bibliography
Gods and goddesses in the garden : Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants, Peter Bernhardt
Gods and goddesses in the garden : Greco-Roman mythology and the scientific names of plants, Peter Bernhardt
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Includes bibliographical references (pages 209-215) and indexes
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online resource
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Preface : the face in the flower -- Acknowledgments -- Disclaimer -- 1. In the Cyclops's orchard : the why and how of scientific names -- 1.1. Inside the herbarium -- 1.2. Enter the Linnaean system -- 1.3. Naming a new species -- 1.4. Rafinesque : a cautionary tale -- 1.5. A hierarchy based on sex -- 1.6. Sex is not enough -- 1.7. Can you subdivide a species? -- 1.8. But what is a species? -- 1.9. A curse on your synonyms -- 2. Constructing a centaur : the informative art of scientific names -- 2.1. Classical names -- 2.2. Descriptive names -- 2.3. Geographic names -- 2.4. Honorifics -- 2.5. Mythological and literary allusions -- 2.6. Lindley's logic -- 2.7. Scientists conceal meanings in classical allusions -- 2.8. But what were those rhizotomi thinking? -- 2.9. Taxonomists continue to expand the traditions of the rhizotomi -- 2.10. But is this a book about myths or a book about plants? -- 2.11. And what about synonyms? -- 3. Mother Earth and her children -- 3.1. Earth's origin and night's children -- 3.2. The birth of the Titans -- 3.3. The reign of Cronus -- 3.4. The origin of nymphs -- 3.5. Chaste or constant nymphs -- 3.6. Nymphs and their children -- 3.7. The first centaur -- 4. The triumph of Zeus -- 4.1. The birth of Zeus -- 4.2. The childhood of Zeus -- 4.3. Zeus and the Titans' daughters -- 4.4. The muses -- 4.5. Zeus defeats Atlas -- 4.6. Zeus and his brothers divide the universe -- 4.7. The kingdom of Hades -- 4.8. The palace of Olympus -- 4.9. Battles on Olympus -- 4.10. Zeus and the first woman -- 5. The gods of Olympus -- 5.1. Divine messengers -- 5.2. Zeus and his sisters -- 5.3. The wedding of Zeus and Hera -- 5.4. Leto's children -- 5.5. Apollo and the gods of medicine -- 5.6. Hera and her mortal rivals -- 5.7. The deification of Dionysus -- 5.8. The many names of the love goddess -- 5.9. The household of Aphrodite -- 5.10. Helios and his sisters -- 5.11. The sun's sorrows -- 5.12. Divine vengeance -- 6. Mortal monarchs and monsters -- 6.1. The first kings -- 6.2. Preferred princes -- 6.3. Aphrodite and Adonis -- 6.4. Meleager and the fates -- 6.5. Prince Perseus -- 6.6. The deeds of Perseus -- 6.7. The conception, birth, and youth of Heracles -- 6.8. The labors of Heracles -- 6.9. The cloud woman -- 6.10. Jason and the Argonauts -- 7. Troy and its aftermath -- 7.1. The origin and growth of Troy -- 7.2. The judgment of Paris -- 7.3. The Trojan War -- 7.4. Kings return to Greece -- 7.5. The interrupted voyage of Odysseus -- 7.6. Odysseus and the women -- 7.7. Nestor and his mother -- Epilogue : a plant for Persephone? -- Glossary -- Selected and annotated bibliography -- General index -- Index of scientific names
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1 online resource (xix, 239 pages)
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