Paola Bertucci (Yale HSHM) “What Is Natural History The History Of?” (Peabody Museum of Natural History John H. Ostrom Lecture Series)

Thursday, September 19, 2019
5:30 PM
Peabody Museum of Natural History

Why is natural history history, and what kind of history is it? To answer these questions, Paola Bertucci, Associate Professor of History and History of Medicine, and curator of the Peabody’s History of Science and Technology Division, will focus on natural history as it was practiced from the16th to the 18th centuries, well before Charles Darwin proposed his theory of evolution. Beginning with the rediscovery of Pliny the Elder’s Natural History in the Renaissance, this illustrated talk will explore the meanings that natural history came to acquire by the time of the Scientific Revolution, and ask how early collections, museums, catalogues, herbaria, and encyclopedias shaped definitions of nature and the place of humans within it.

The John H. Ostrom 2019-2020 Lecture Series is sponsored by the Trumbull Lectureship and the Office of the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life, Yale University. For more information, please visit:

Paola Bertucci is an Associate Professor of History  and History of Medicine, and Curator, History of Science and Technology, Yale Peabody Museum.