pomona herefordiensis

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Pomona Herefordiensis

Herefordshire Year in the Orchard is a way for all of us to celebrate and enjoy the County's unique orchard heritage and the people that have and still are making it a very special "County of Orchards"

The resource box below will allow you to explore the unique and wonderful world of Apples and Pears as portrayed by Thomas Andrew Knight in his Pomona Herefordiensis, first published in 1811. All thirty of the varieties are beautifully illustrated by hand-coloured plates with Knight's own description and notes to accompany them.

Copies of this and other Pomonas are on display in Hereford Cider Museum and are available on a special CD-ROM available from the Marcher Apple Network (see link to website below).


More about Knight's Pomona

This groundbreaking masterpiece was originally issued as a ten piece 'part-work' between 1808 and 1811 by the Agricultural Society of Herefordshire (of which T.A. Knight was a founder member). The original series was published by W. Bulmer with the subsequent reprint, 1820-1825, being published by D.Cartwright. The work is Quarto sized, the few remaining complete and bound copies ofPomona Herefordiensis are a result of people collecting all ten parts and then having them bound to their own specifications. Some of these bound copies are very interesting, being presented as gifts to loved ones,  some also include part-works from both releases. The complete work consists of detailed preface followed by an image and Knight's own detailed and scientific description of 30 apple and pear varieties. Although the text is very informative it is perhaps the illustrations that make this work so special. Each of the thirty illustrations in each work were hand coloured so every illustration in every copy is unique! If you ever have the chance to compare different Pomona's illustrations side by side the differences in the colour, tone and detail of this hand colouring become very apparent. The pages were under-printed using the 'aquatint' process using plates engraved by the famous illustrator William Hooker after original works by Elisabeth Matthews (27 illustrations) and Frances Knight, Thomas' daughter (3 illustrations). These illustrations show the varieties just as they would have been in real life with twig, leaves (including larvae-damaged ones!), lichens, blemishes and bitter-pit spots - something never before dared in an expensive plate work.

Unfortunately as the illustrations are so attractive many copies of the work have over the last 200 years been "vandalised" by the removal of the illustrations to be framed and used as household decoration. This is such a waste as separated from their text much of the wider interest and meaning is lost and the illustrations eventually fade to nothing with lengthy exposure to daylight.

The following PDF documents are scans from an original Pomona Herefordiensis by Thomas Andrew Knight. They include the descriptive page and the hand-coloured illustration. Enjoy!

Frontispiece and Title Page

Redstreak (I)

Golden Pippin (II)

Foxwhelp (III)

Red Must (IV)

Hagloe Crab (V)

Loan Pearmain (VI)

Grange Apple (VII)

Orange Pippin (VIII)

Downton Pippin (IX

Woodcock (X)

Oldfield Pear (XI)

Forest Stire (XII)

Teinton Squash Pear (XIII)

Foxley Apple (XIV)

Pawsan (XV)

Best Bache (XVI)

Yellow Elliot (XVII)(

Longland Pear (XVIII)

Old Quining (XIX)

Holmore Pear (XX)

Bennett Apple (XXI)

Golden Harvey or Brandy Apple (XXII)

Siberian Crab (XXIII)

Huffcap Pear (XXIV)

Stead's Kernel (XXV)

Garter Apple (XXVIU)

Barland Pear (XXVII)

Cowarne Red (XXVIII)

Old Pearmain (XXIX)

The Friar (XXX)

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