From Jardine's The Naturalist's Library
|Born||4 February 1725
Wood Lane, London, England
|Died||15 December 1803
Turnham Green, London, England
He was born in Wood Lane, London. His father was a silversmith, and Dru took over the business in 1748. He retired as a silversmith in 1789 to devote his time entirely to entomology. Drury had a keen interest in entomology already, and was the president of the Society of Entomologists of London from 1780 to 1782. He became ill and moved in 1801 to Turnham Green hoping to improve his heath, but died of stone two years later and was buried at St. Martin-in-the-Fields. He was a personal friend of the Danish entomologist Johan Christian Fabricius.
From 1770 to 1787, he published the three-volume Illustrations of Natural History, wherein are exhibited upwards of 240 figures of Exotic Insects, which was later revised and republished under the title Illustrations of Exotic Entomology in 1837.
Drury was also a prolific collector—his collection comprised over 11,000 specimens. "there may be in Holland collections more numerous, having in many instances a great number of a single species, yet no collection abounds with such a wonderful variety in all the different genera as this. All the specimens of which it is composed, are in the highest and most exquisite state of preservation, such an extensive collection can be supposed to be, and a very considerable number are unique, such as are not to be found in any other Cabinet whatever, and of considerable value ; many of which, coming from countries exceedingly unhealthy, where the collectors, in procuring them, have perished by the severity of the climate, give but little room to expect any duplicate will ever be obtained during the present age ; and the learned quotations that have been taken from it by those celebrated authors Linnaeus and Fabricius, in all their late editions, are incontestable proofs of the high degrees of estimation they entertained of it." Printed circular which Drury distributed with a view to the sale of the collection in 1788.
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Illustrations of Exotic Entomology
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