Books Received | Published:

(1) A Dictionary of the Flowering Plants and Ferns (2) The Living Cycads (3) British Ferns and How to Identify Them

Nature volume 104, pages 410411 (25 December 1919) | Download Citation



(I) IN the fourth edition of his “Dictionary of the Flowering Plants and Ferns,” Dr. Willis has achieved the ideal form in arrangement, the sweeping together of the whole of the material into one alphabetical sequence. Part i. of the original edition, a somewhat'sketchy and unequal account of the morphology, natural history, taxonomy, distribution, and economic uses of the phanerogams and ferns, has been eliminated, and the gain of space has been usefully employed in enlarging the scope of the main portion of the work. Dr. Willis claims that he has now found it possible to include all the genera, and though the expert in taxonomy may note a few omissions, the general botanist or student for whom the work is intended will not be critical on this heading. The book is, in fact, a remarkable compendium of botanical information, including not only the genera, which are referred to their family, and accorded some descriptive matter varying from a bare statement of geographical distribution to a paragraph, but also the families, which are treated in detail according to their relative size and importance. A useful feature is the inclusion of a great many popular names of plants and a large number of botanical terms, though the latter are much more exhaustively treated in Dr. Daydon Jackson's classic work. There are also a few general articles, such as one on “Collecting,” and on concepts such as the leaf, inflorescence, fruit, etc., in which numerous cross-references are given to other headings.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

About this article

Publication history





    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

    Newsletter Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing