A site dedicated to the life and work of Sir Thomas Browne who
was born 19 October 1605 in London and died 19 October 1682 in Norwich
Sir Thomas Browne Day
New Edition of Sir Thomas Browne by Kevin Killeen
For many years now it has been difficult to find the writings of Thomas Browne, except in second hand shops. A new edition of Browne has recently come out in paperback from Oxford University Press, at a wholly affordable price. Thomas Browne, Selected Writings, edited by Kevin Killeen, contains all of Browne’s major writings, Religio Medici, Urn-Burial, and The Garden of Cyrus, and generous selections from Pseudodoxia Epidemica, as well as a selection of writings published after his death. The volume is part a new series, ‘21st Century Oxford Authors’, and is ‘lightly modernised’ – the original spelling is generally retained, but punctuation is clarified when necessary. It includes an introduction to Browne, explanatory notes and commentary at the end of the book.
Kevin Killeen is a lecturer in English Literature at the University of York, and is part of the team editing The Complete Works of Sir Thomas Browne, in 8 volumes, also from Oxford University Press, albeit in expensive format. He has written extensively on Browne, including the prize-winning Biblical Scholarship, Science and Politics in Early Modern Culture: Thomas Browne and The Thorny Place of Knowledge (2009).
Exciting free event at Norfolk & Norwich Millennium Library Friday 2 March - postponed due to snow - will be rescheduled
Some things to listen to
A link to a podcast of Professor Claire Preston's talk about Browne's Curious Words in Norwich October 2017 https://thenorfolkheritagecentrepodcast.wordpress.com/
A link to an article about Browne's invention of words
About elderberries ref Pseudodoxia Epidemica
One of Browne's experiments was to de-bunk the myth that elderberries are poisonous, which he tested by eating elderberries. This article talks about the health benefits of elderberries in averting flu and the science behind it, although it does point out that elder wood is poisonous and shouldn't be ingested. http://marmadukescarlet.blogspot.co.uk/2011/09/elderberry-cordial-great-tasting-anti.html
EDP article about Sir Thomas Browne Day www.edp24.co.uk/features/celebrating-true-norwich-great-sir-thomas-browne-1-5237996
Sarah and Richard Cocke
Sir Thomas Browne’s plants:
a garden trail at the Royal College of Physicians, Regents Park, London
A new trail in the RCP garden of medicinal plants leads visitors around plants and flowers grown by the 17th-century physician and collector Sir Thomas Browne. Written by the RCP head gardener and horticultural curator, Jane Knowles, and based on research done by Dr Harriet Phillips of Queen Mary University of London, the trail accompanied the 2017 exhibition ‘A cabinet of rarities’: the curious collections of Sir Thomas Browne.
Read more here
'Browne’s own work on plants, The Garden of Cyrus (1658), takes the quincunx – a five-pointed geometrical plantation pattern – as the starting point for an exploration of the chaotic abundance of nature.'
Sam Crosfield, assistant gardener, Royal College of Physicians
Telephone: 020 3075 1543
Tell us your Old Wives' Tales
His whole house and garden is a paradise and Cabinet of rarities and that of the best collection, amongst Medails, books, Plants, natural things
'The Adventures of Sir Thomas Browne
in the 21st Century'
Now out in paperback and available from bookshops, Amazon and on Kindle etc
Hugh Aldersey Williams' book about Sir Thomas Browne was published by Granta and launched at The Bookhive Norwich in 2015.
See more here
Those national repugnances doe not touch me, nor doe I behold with prejudice the French, Italian, Spaniard, or Dutch; but where I find their actions in balance with my Countrey-mens, I honour, love, and embrace them in the same degree;
Norwich-born Kevin Faulkner has been performing as Browne for 20 years. As a 21st anniversary celebration he performed on Hay Hill on 19 October 2017
‘We are not magisterial in opinions, nor have we dictator-like obtruded our conceptions, but in the humility of enquiries or disquisitions, have only proposed them unto more ocular discerners.’
Useful links about Sir Thomas
Links to other resources about Sir Thomas will be posted here
Listen to Professor Claire Preston and Hugh Aldersey Williams discussing Thomas Browne on BBC Radio 3's Free Thinking, originally broadcast on Tuesday 5th May 2015.
About Sir Thomas Browne
Sir Thomas Browne lived and worked in Norwich from 1636 until his death in 1682. He was a physician, philosopher, botanist and writer and was very important in England at the time. He was well-liked in Norfolk, well-travelled and educated, religious and respected. There are traces of his time in Norwich all over the city and this site will tell you about his life and where to find out more about him.
If you have images, facts, documents or stories which you would like to add to this site, please email email@example.com for consideration
A new video about Sir Thomas Browne and the work that Queen Mary University are doing about him and a new exhibition January-July 2017 (see below) focussing on curiosity - one of the most significant traits of Sir Thomas Browne
Homage to Thomas Browne
The sculpture work on Hay Hill is an Homage to Thomas Browne, made by French husband and wife team of artists, Anne and Patrick Poirer. It was intended to be a set of street furniture, a kind of living room for the city (the Poiriers tend not to make art for simply looking at).
It was a major public art commission, installed in 2007 and paid for by Arts Council England East, Norwich City Council with a contribution by Norfolk County Council. Read more here
About this site: this embryonic site has just been started by an informal Thomas Browne Appreciation Society to enable people to get to know Sir Thomas Browne better by collecting information relating to him in one place. We have received some funding to enable us to develop the site and will also be launching a crowd-funding campaign to develop further. Please bookmark and come back regularly for new content. .