John Ellis (naturalist)
|Died||15 October 1776(aged 65–66)|
|Occupation||Naturalist, linen merchant|
Copley Medal |
Ellis specialised in the study of corals. He was elected a member of the Royal Society in 1754 and in the following year published An essay towards the Natural History of the Corallines. He was awarded the Copley Medal in 1767. His A Natural History of Many Uncommon and Curious Zoophytes, written with Daniel Solander, was published posthumously in 1776.
A royal botanist, William Young imported living plants of the Venus flytrap to England. They were then shown to Ellis. In 1769, he wrote a description of the plant discovery from North Carolina to send to the Father of Taxonomy, Carl Linnaeus. Ellis also gave it the scientific name of "Dionaea muscipula". Later, his essay Directions for bringing over seeds and plants, from the East Indies (1770) included the first illustration of a Venus Flytrap plant.
- Directions for Bringing over Seeds and Plants, from the East Indies and Other Distant Countries, in a State of Vegetation: - Together with a Catalogue of Such Foreign Plants as Are Worthy of Being Encouraged in Our American Colonies, for the Purposes of Medicine, Agriculture, and Commerce. To Which is Added, the Figure and Botanical Description of a New Sensitive Plant, Called Dionaea muscipula: or, Venus's Fly-trap (London, printed and sold by L. Davis, 1770).
- IPNI. J.Ellis.
Ellis, John (1773) Directions for bringing over seeds and plants, from the East-Indies and other distant countries - digital facsimile from Linda Hall Library