Bradley, Richard 1688-1732

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Bradley was one of the most voluminous writers upon agriculture and gardening. Johnson, author of History of Gardening (1829), states that Bradley was "one of the first to treat gardening and agriculture as sciences."

His name was attached to more than 20 publications between 1716 and 1730. His works show a well-informed and comprehensive mind. He was a Fellow of the Royal Society and in 1724 was elected Professor of Botany at Cambridge. However, he was considered unfitted for the office due to his ignorance of foreign languages and other reasons. His work ran through many editions and although the contents were culled from earlier writers, they indicated the trends of the times in agriculture and horticulture.

Among his best known books were: A Treatise on Succulent Plants (1710), New Improvements of Planting and Gardening both Philosophical and Practical (1717). These went through several editions up to 1731. It is interesting as his works show the ideas of an intelligent man just previous to the advances of Linnaeus who in 1739 was only 32. He also wrote: The History of Succulent Plants (1717), A General Treatise on Husbandry and Gardening (1723), A survey of Ancient Husbandry and Gardening Collected from the Greeks and Romans (1725), The Riches of a Hop Garden Explained (1729), A Dictionary of Plants, Their Description and Use (1747).