The Society for the History of Natural History

The Society for the History of Natural History is a friendly international society for everyone who is interested in natural history in the broadest sense.  This includes botany, zoology and geology as well as natural history collections, exploration, art and bibliography. Everyone with an interest in these subjects – professional or amateur – is welcome to join. For a brief history of the society, click here.

SHNH is known for its friendliness and provides a focal point for the history of all aspects of natural history.  It has a thriving international membership and regional representatives organise local meetings. An international meeting is held at regular intervals, the most recent being held in the United States in November 2012. A number of meetings and events are scheduled for 2013 so do visit the Meetings and Events pages for more information. Of especial interest will be our meeting on Alfred Russel Wallace. 

The Society's main publication is Archives of natural history, produced twice a year, and distributed free to all members. It contains refereed, illustrated papers and book reviews and is published for the Society by Edinburgh University Press. All volumes published from 1936 are now available online.

From time to time, the Society also publishes other works of interest. To celebrate SHNH's 75th anniversary in 2011, we published History and mystery, an anthology of the most interesting, bizarre and entertaining notes and queries from the Society's newsletters. Other publications include: Darwin in the Archives and A Century of Discovery.

An informal Newsletter is produced three times a year and distributed free to members. It contains details of forthcoming meetings, news of other events, a lively Notes & Queries section, members’ news and new publications. 

On this site you will find information about the Society, its activities, publications and how to join us. You will also find news and up-to-date information as well as links to useful resources and further information.

Latest News

Wednesday 26. of September 2012 Edward Lear's other owl and pussycat are on display at the Royal Society


Edward Lear and the Scientists; a public display of rare and valuable books, drawings and lithographs, showcasing the fine zoological illustrations of Edward Lear, renowned for his nonsense poetry, including the famed The...

Tuesday 25. of September 2012 The Remarkable Nature of Edward Lear Thursday 27th September

The Remarkable Nature of Edward Lear

Speaker: Robert McCracken Peck

at  The Linnean Society of London, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BF  on Thursday 27th September from 18:00 to 20:00

A joint...

Monday 17. of September 2012 Andrea Kennedy winner of the 2012 William T. Stearn Essay Prize announced

Congratulations to Andrea Kennedy (University of Cambridge MPhil student 2011-12) for winning the William T. Stearn Student Essay Prize for 2012. This annual award is given by the Society for the History of Natural History...

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The Society for the History of Natural History (Registered Charity No.2103555 in England and Wales)