Tim Richardson

Flora Delanica

Mrs Delany and Her Circle

By

Yale University Press 283pp £40 order from our bookshop

Quite why the editors of this otherwise exemplary book should insist on calling their subject Mrs Delany on the jacket rather than Mary Delany is a mystery. The use of her first name would have been a respectful and rehabilitating gesture for a female artist best known for her intricately cut ‘paper mosaiks’ of plants and flowers, whereas the old-fashioned ‘Mrs’ only serves to shore up the stereotypical ideas of genteel, domesticated amateurism which the twelve essays in this sumptuous book so comprehensively refute. 

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