Wild Flowers of the British Isles
Wild Flowers of the British Isles Title Page


Wild Flowers of the British Isles
written and illustrated by H. Isabel Adams
(Heinemann, 1907-10)

Harriet Isabel Adams studied at the Birmingham School of Art and became an active member of the botanical scene within Britain during the very early 20th century. Transferring her skills from Arts and Crafts illustration to that of botany through the study of plant anatomy, Adams combined scientific accuracy with artistic sensibility.

Although Adams’s work was underpinned by botanical science, it was often dismissed as feminine and whimsical. Her choice of which flower species to include, for example, was questioned by a critic in The Academy, and whilst her artwork was deemed ‘beautiful’, the critic believed it was a somewhat amateur performance. Such dismissal is typical of the experience of women in science throughout the 20th century, and invites comparison with the way women are regarded in the scientific world today. Adams’s scholarly credentials were recognised by the Linnaean Society of London, a prestigious group of botanical scientists, who admitted her to membership in 1907, the same year Volume I of Wild Flowers was published.

Caption by Jayde Martin

Associated Place(s)

Timeline of Events Associated with Wild Flowers of the British Isles


  • H. Isabel Adams

Image Date: