William Curtis, 1746-1799, founded this monthly periodical, one of the oldest such periodicals of its kind, and still being published, in response to the English people’s demand for such reading. The first four volumes contain hand-colored plates by James Sowerby, a noted plant illustrator. In the 1770s Curtis organized field trips in and around London for gentlemen "Who wish to acquire a knowledge of plants growing wild about town, or of Linnaeus’ system of botany." Curtis was demonstrator at the Chelsea Physic Garden, the facility of the Worshipful Company of Apothecaries, where his work was to teach apprentice apothecaries to recognize medicinal plants in the wild. He had his own garden at Lambeth and was partner in a nursery located first at Brompton and then in Chelsea. He is the author of several works on botany.