Bautte. A gold and enamel open face key wind pocket watch owned by the botanist George Bentham and given in memoriam to his Godson Joseph Symonds Hooker, son of Joseph Hooker
Lot 122
Bautte. A gold and enamel open face key wind pocket watch owned by the botanist George Bentham and given in memoriam to his Godson Joseph Symonds Hooker, son of Joseph Hooker
Sold for £3,125 (US$ 5,308) inc. premium
Auction Details
Bautte. A gold and enamel open face key wind pocket watch owned by the botanist George Bentham and given in memoriam to his Godson Joseph Symonds Hooker, son of Joseph Hooker
Lot Details
Bautte. A gold and enamel open face key wind pocket watch owned by the botanist George Bentham and given in memoriam to his Godson Joseph Symonds Hooker, son of Joseph Hooker
Swiss cylinder movement with blued steel regulation, offset engine turned silver dial with Roman hourly numerals and outer five minute divisions, blued steel moon hands, engraved and enamelled foliate case with the Bentham family crest on the reverse, together with winding key and short gold chain the inside case back with engraved dedication reading, Joseph Symonds Hooker in remembrance of his Godfather George Bentham to whom this watch belonged, cuvette signed and numbered
49mm

Footnotes

  • George Bentham (1800-1884) was the son of Samuel Bentham, Naval engineer and inventor. His early life was spent very much on the move, with spells in Russia and Scandinavia before the family finally settled in the south of France. His mother was very interested in Botany and kept detailed notes during their travels. Nephew to the Philosopher and Jurist Jeremy Bentham, George became enthusiastic about Botany in 1817 and he worked on translating his Uncle's Chrestomathia into French. During a brief visit to England in 1823 he met with the leading Botanists of the day, including William Jackson Hooker, with whom he maintained a lifelong association. In 1826 he returned to England to live and became Secretary to Jeremy Bentham and started to study Law, whilst still maintaining his botanical studies part-time. He was elected a Fellow of the Linnean Society in 1828 and became the Hon. Secretary of the Horticultural Society in 1830.

    When Jeremy Bentham died in 1832, he became independently wealthy and was able to devote himself entirely to botanical studies. Living in the country, he helped distribute the vast collections of botanical samples collected by employees of the East India Company and travelled widely each summer, sending informal reports back to his friend WJ Hooker. Returning finally to London, he settled quietly into a life of study, travelling each day to Kew, where he worked in the Herbarium. His major published works date from this period: Handbook of British Flora 1858 (later revised by WJ Hooker and remaining in print until WW2) and jointly with Hooker, by then Director of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Genera Plantarium 1863-78. He died on September 10th 1884 without leaving any children.

    Captain Joseph Symonds Hooker (1877-1940) was the 2nd son to Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker from his second marriage to Hyacinth Symonds in 1876. He served in the Boer War and was a Captain in the Indian Regiment in 1914.

    Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker OM, GCSI, CB, FRS (1817-1911) was one of the greatest British botanists and explorers of the 19th century. Hooker was one of the leading founders of geographical botany, and one of Charles Darwin's closest friends. He was Director of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew, for twenty years, in succession to his father, William Jackson Hooker, and was awarded the highest honours of British science.
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