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Adansonia digitata L. (Baobab or 'Upside-down' tree)

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Watercolour, gouache and pencil field sketch on paper. Inscribed by Baines in pencil on recto 'The Big tree a M.... or Baobab at Marma Kahuwe Dec 29 1861 10am, T. Baines. about one days journey from Lake Ngami'. The inscription possibly reads 'Moana or Baobab', as this is how James Chapman refers to the tree in his journals [spelt 'mowana' in Setswana]. Chapman noted that the tree was named Marma Kahuwe after a local native Chieftain. The tree appears on Baines's published 'Map of the Route' in his journal as 'The Big tree, a Mowana or Baobab, Mamakahooie', approximately 20 miles south-west of Lake Ngami. The circumference of this tree was measured at around 70 feet. A stereoscopic photograph of the same tree, probably taken by Chapman, is held in Kew's collections.

Copyright © RBG KEW

Media ID 654242

Date: 3rd December 2007

Author: Baines, Thomas (1820-1875)

Filename: BAI00000003.jpg

Image Size: 3828 x 2652 Pixels

Filesize is 8.84MB

Version 2 is 4.55MB

Associated Categories: Botanical Art

Keywords:  19th century  bombacaceae  botanical art  botswana  expedition  exploration  explorer  landscape painting  south west africa  thomas baines collection  timber  tree  useful plants