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Title: The Boutelou Brothers: from gardening to agronomic practices, education, and travels in Spain at the turn of the nineteenth century
Authors: García Pereda, Ignacio
Rodrigues, Ana Duarte
Parejo Moruno, Francisco Manuel
Keywords: Botanical gardens;Jardines botánicos;Agronomic education;Educación agronómica;Agronomic manuals and translations;Manuales y traducciones agronómicas;Agronomic travels;Viajes agronómicos;New agriculture;Nueva agricultura;Spanish agriculture;Agricultura española
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: The Royal Society Publishing
Abstract: At the turn of the nineteenth century, agriculture in Spain was seen as an empirical know-howthat was transmitted from generation to generation through practice. However, at the royalgardens the idea that agriculture was a scientific branch of knowledge was alreadygerminating. Focusing on the two brothers—Claudio (1774–1842) and Esteban (1776–1812) Boutelou—this paper argues that these gardeners, profiting from their positions atthe Spanish royal gardens, promoted agronomic development and education. In spite of theimportance of the Boutelou family, afive-generation dynasty of gardeners, historiographyhas paid scant attention to them, as well as to the importance of agronomic travels andtheir reports. This paper aims at interweaving the boundaries between the history ofscience, history of agriculture, and gardens and landscape studies. Through the lenses ofhistory of science and the application of Long’s conceptual framework of‘trading zones’and Baldassarri and Matei’s‘gardens as laboratories’, we focus on the position of theBoutelou brothers in the gardens of the royal estates and the new Sanlúcar acclimatizationgarden. We then demonstrate how they were influenced by travels abroad and how ArthurYoung, a Briton, became their role model. Moreover, we establish a relation between theBoutelou’s network of experts and the rise of translations of English and French books andthe appearance of thefirst agricultural teaching manuals in Castilian, often published in thecontext of agricultural societies. Finally, we show how this was fundamental to the renewalof agronomic practices and education in Spain.
ISSN: 0035-9149
DOI: 10.1098/rsnr.2020.0053
Appears in Collections:DBVET - Artículos
DECON - Artículos

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