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Papyrus, Paper and Paper making: A view of Kew's Economic Botany Collections

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The first overview is presented of the paper contents of Kew's Economic Botany Collections (EBC). There are more than 350 specimens of paper representing nearly 50 plant families and more than a hundred genera. The dominant families numerically – and each for different reasons – are the Moraceae, Gramineae, Thymelaeaceae and Cyperaceae, examples from which are highlighted. Some emphasis is given to the historical context and geographical origin of papers, and to the people who collected or donated them. It is suggested that one focus of a future collecting strategy for the EBC should be the sorts of plant products, including papers, that are under threat due to losses of cultural diversity or biological diversity, or both.
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Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: Centre for Economic Botany and Economic Botany Collections at Kew

Publication date: February 1, 2002

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