Treasures and Tea: In Books lies the soul of the whole Past Time

No book better embodies the spirit of “the first … great philosophical age of Scotland” than The Statistical Account of Scotland, which appeared in twenty-one volumes between 1791 and 1799 under the editorship of the noted agricultural improver, Sir John Sinclair of Ulbster (1754-1835).
Using a range of texts held in Special Collections, including a copy of the first edition of the Statistical Account, this talk will trace the origins of Sinclair’s work back to Sir Francis Bacon’s vision of the renewal of human learning and then explore how Sinclair’s collaborative survey of Scotland blends together the nascent science of statistics, natural history, the narrative of the progress of humankind from rudeness to refinement sketched by Scottish philosophical historians, and what in the eighteenth century was known as “the science of man”.

Treasures and Tea in Special Collections and the University Archives brings together researchers, instructors, students, and members of the community to explore and share materials from the collections. The informal show-and-tell presentations are held at 1:30pm every first and third Wednesday of the month followed by discussion and refreshments.

Treasures & Tea "In Books lies the soul of the whole Past Time": The Statistical Account of Scotland and the Spirit of a Philosophical Age with Dr. Paul Wood, Department of History and Scottish Studies Faculty Fellow in the Humanities

When: January 27th, 1:30 p.m.
Where: Room 210, Mearns Centre for Learning - McPherson Library