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James Sherard

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Title: James Sherard  
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Subject: List of Fellows of the Royal Society S,T,U,V, November 1
Collection: 1666 Births, 1738 Deaths, English Botanists
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James Sherard

James Sherard
Born (1666-11-01)1 November 1666
Bushby, Leicestershire
Died 12 February 1738(1738-02-12)
Nationality English
Institutions Chelsea Physic Garden
Alma mater Merchant Taylors' School, Northwood

James Sherard (1 November 1666[1] – 12 February 1738) was an English William, also became a noted botanist. James Sherard may have been educated at Merchant Taylors' School, Northwood,[2] which his brother attended, but his name is nowhere to be found in the published list of students.[3] On 7 February 1682, apothecary Charles Watts, who served as curator of Chelsea Physic Garden, took him in as an apprentice. After honing his craft with Watts, Sherard moved to Mark Lane, London, where he started his own business.[4]

In time, Sherard came into contact with

  • Boulger, G. S. (2004). "Dillenius, Johann Jakob (1687–1747)". rev. D. J. Mabberley, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (subscription required). Oxford University Press. Retrieved on 11 June 2008.
  • Munk, William (1878). The Roll of the Royal College of Physicians of London. London: Royal College of Physicians.
  • Tilmouth, Michael and Robert Thompson. "Sherard [Sharwood], James [Giacomo]". Grove Music Online (subscription required). ed. L. Macy. Retrieved on 7 June 2008.
  • Webb, W. W. (2004; online edition, January 2008). "Sherard, James (1666–1738)". rev. Scott Mandelbrote, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (subscription required). Oxford University Press. Retrieved on 7 June 2008. The first edition of this text is available as an article on Wikisource:  
  • Stephen Rose (ed.). Leipzig Church Music from the Sherard Collection: Eight Works by Sebastian Knüpfer, Johann Schelle, and Johann Kuhnau, Yale University Collegium Musicum series 2, volume 20 (Madison, WI: A-R Editions, 2014)


  1. ^ Tilmouth, "James Sherard, an English Amateur Composer", 315. Webb gives a birthdate of 1 July but Tilmouth writes that the register of births at Thurnby church in Leicestershire gives the date of 1 November.
  2. ^ Munk, 127.
  3. ^ Tilmouth, "James Sherard, an English Amateur Composer", 315.
  4. ^ a b c d Webb.
  5. ^ a b Tilmouth and Thompson.
  6. ^ a b Tilmouth, "James Sherard, an English Amateur Composer", 318.
  7. ^ Stephen Rose, Leipzig Church Music from the Sherard Collection.
  8. ^ Dillenius, Hortus Elthamensis seu plantarum rariorum quas in horto suo Elthami in Cantio coluit... Jacobus Sherard... Delineationes et descriptiones quarum historia vel plane non, vel imperfecte a rei herbariae scriptoribus tradita fuit... It was printed in two folio volumes at Sherard's expense, at London, 1732.
  9. ^ Henrey, British botanical and horticultural literature
  10. ^ Tilmouth, "James Sherard, an English Amateur Composer", 319.


In 1728, Sherard's brother died, and he was left in charge of executing William's will. He successfully negotiated his brother's endowment of the Sherardian Professorship of Botany at the University of Oxford; following the terms of the will, Dillenius was named the first Sherardian Professor. For his work in endowing the professorship, Sherard was granted a doctorate in medicine by the university in 1731.[10] Upon his death, he had amassed a fortune of £150,000. He was survived by his wife Susanna, with whom he had no children, and was buried at the Evington parish church.[4]

Sherard soon found himself maintaining a growing collection of rare plants at Eltham. Despite his ill health, he made several trips to continental Europe in search of seeds for his garden, which soon became recognized as one of the finest in England.[4] In 1721, in order to help with a projected revision of Caspar Bauhin’s Pinax of 1623, William Sherard brought the German botanist Johann Jacob Dillenius to England. In 1732, James published Dillenius' s illustrated catalog of the collection at Eltham.[8] According to Blanche Henrey[9] it was "the most important book to be published in England during the eighteenth century on the plants growing in a private garden" and a major work for the pre-Linnaean taxonomy of South African plants, notably the succulents of the Cape Province. Dillenius' herbarium specimens from Eltham are preserved in the herbarium of the Oxford Botanical Garden.

In 1711, around the time Sherard finished composing his second set of sonatas, the Duke died, and Sherard's interest in music seems to have died with him. He also fell ill with gout, which prevented him from playing the violin. Instead, he turned to botany; he wrote in August 1716 that "of late the love of Botany has so far prevailed as to divert my mind from things I formerly thought more material".[6] Upon retiring from his business in Mark Lane in the 1720s, he had already acquired an ample fortune. He purchased two manors in Leicestershire and a property at Eltham in Kent, near London, where he largely resided.[4]

[7] Sherard's extensive collection of manuscripts of vocal and instrumental music is preserved in the Bodleian Library, and includes unique copies of German church music among other items.[5] form.da chiesa Sherard published a second set of trio sonatas in 1711. Both sets are in [6]

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