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Meetings With Remarkable Trees (Cassell Illustrated Classics) Hardcover – 12 Jun 2003


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: W&N; New Ed edition (12 Jun. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0297843508
  • ISBN-13: 978-0297843504
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.4 x 22.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 252,802 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Thomas Pakenham, a distinguished historian of Africa, takes a new tack by writing an old-fashioned kind of book in Meetings with Remarkable Trees: a catalogue of trees of the British Isles. The last such book was published in 1826. In Meetings with Remarkable Trees Pakenham assembles a beautifully photographed gallery of 60-odd trees of Scotland, England and Ireland, and magnificent trees they are. One is a 600-year-old king oak that looms large over Charleville, Ireland; another is the yew tree that Wordsworth called the "pride of Lorton's vale"; still another is a sequoia brought from the United States and planted in a Herefordshire grove in 1851, where it has since flourished. Pakenham helpfully includes a map showing the locations of his scattered dramatis personae; you could make a fine tour retracing his steps and having a look for yourself. --Christine Buttery, Amazon.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Thomas Pakenham will attend the Edinburgh Festival on 25/8/03

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
THE TWO LARGEST COMMON OAKS (Quercus robur) in Britain and Ireland - and probably Europe, too - are the Fredville Oak in Kent and the Bowthorpe Oak in Lincolnshire. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 58 people found the following review helpful By siobhanm@cwcom.net on 30 Dec. 1999
Format: Paperback
This is not a book for someone who merely enjoys a walk in the woods, this is a book for people who feel passionately about trees, who understand them and appreciate the beauty of these amazing natural structures that give shape and interest to our land. This book takes you back in time and allows you to understand the lives of these many unusually shaped, living historical monuments. This is a book that will change how you look at trees. The photography is amazing and the guide to where to find the trees is very helpful. Everybody who has ever looked at a tree and wondered about it's life should buy this book, trees will never look quite the same again.
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45 of 45 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 21 Oct. 1998
Format: Hardcover
I am just doing a quick review, though it must be a year since I bought my copy, as I'm about to buy another one for my Mum for Christmas (she doesn't use computers so she won't know I've said this). I take Meetings with Remarkable Trees down from its shelf more often than any of the books of travel photographs, art books, souvenir-type books most people own but don't look at. Why? It inspires me, tugs at the emotions in a way you'd never expect. Look at it in a shop and you'll never appreciate its long-term magic. It's difficult to explain why you should buy it - there's no guarantee you'll see anything other than an expensive picture book - but you might and if you do, it'll be worth every penny. Buy the hard-back. You'll want to keep this book for a long time. I'm not normally a 5-star reviewer but it's one of the few books I have which are worth it, so that's what I am giving it.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Bevan TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 18 July 2009
Format: Hardcover
A sumptuous photographic celebration of the finest, tallest, oldest and in some cases oddest trees in Great Britain and Ireland. A quirky and original arrangement that starts with native giant oaks and beeches, moving on to cover American imported specimens, including the British Isles' tallest tree - a 212-foot Douglas Fir at the Hermitage, Dunkeld. On then to imports from the East, including cedars of Lebanon and gingkos - a tree species whose evolutionary lineage is so ancient that it first appeared before leaf-eating insects, and so remains untroubled by them to this day.

Author Thomas Pakenham then tires of organising things geographically, celebrating instead trees as shrines (sacred trees, poets' trees and `trees of liberty' like the sycamore beneath which the Tolpuddle martyrs met to plan the first Trade Union), trees as fantasies, and finally, appropriately, trees as ruins and relics. These include a decaying oak at Bowthorpe, its hollowed-out trunk so large that twenty people can dine inside it.

The photos are, almost without exception, stunning, mixing fine detail of bark and leaves with more panoramic shots. Pakenham's accompanying brief texts are always informative, often with literary allusions or a poetic turn - he says of the Nymans cedar in Sussex: `in the hot wind we could smell the resinous tang of Solomon's temple' (64). You sense a genuine love of the trees he describes and the part they have played in our natural and social history, no more so than when he laments the decayed or dying state of those affected by the hurricanes of 1987 and 1990. A wonderful hymn to trees in all their magnificence.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Peasant TOP 500 REVIEWER on 5 May 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful, lush, magical book, make no mistake. But I was a cheapskate, and bought one of the later re-issues, in paperback. It was a mistake. It's smaller and the photographic reproduction is not as good as it might be. You want the best possible print quality, the largest pages, and a proper binding which will lay flat. Don't be a meany like me; buy the hardback. I will have to buy the hardback anyway, having already coughed up for the paperback.

One of the tantalising things about this book is the possibility of finding, and visiting, some of the actual trees. I am certainly going to try. If you enjoy this, save up your pocket money for Remarkable Trees of the World (again, make sure you get the hardback) - it's worth the money for the section on baobabs lone.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By S Genders on 11 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback
If you like trees buy a copy of this book. The irony is its made from trees, but actually felling and replanting of forest areas is the best way to maximise carbon uptake. All that aside, the trees within the leafy pages of this book will blow you away!
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 20 Mar. 2000
Format: Hardcover
Terrifically presented, you can feel and understand the love of the subject matter by the author. Apparently there's soon to be a companion book based on trees from around rhe world. I can't wait.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By qizmaster on 15 April 2006
Format: Hardcover
I eventually bought this book after i watched and enjoyed several ten minute TV documentary shorts about different trees from the book.These docu/shorts were aired on tv some years ago and i had made a mental note at the time(like you do) to buy the book someday.
Coming accross it years later then,quite by chance,at a very reasonable price on amazon..I took the plunge.
I was not at all dissapointed.
The book is a very personal expedition by the author.He takes the reader on a nostalgic, sentimental, often quite amusingly anecdotal journey.Delightfully filled with awe and wonderment.Observing on the remarkable events and strifes,possibly witnessed through time by each of these great leviathons of the old forests.Living and growing,sometimes albiet completely against the odds,through many many generations of mankind.
I also personly believe that the book serves very well on a different level.That is to consciously remind us all,how we should each personally endevour to do much more.To each try to protect and preserve however we can,our wonderfully precious,ailing and ancient planet.
Totally recommended..and beautifully photographed.
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