- Publisher: Cambridge University Press
- Online publication date: June 2015
- Print publication year: 2015
- Online ISBN: 9781139923613
- DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139923613
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It is not known why Caroline Molesworth (1794–1872) began to make these detailed observations in the garden of her home in Cobham, Surrey. She was interested in botany, and when she moved with her widowed mother from London to Surrey in 1823, she undertook an almost daily survey of nineteen categories of information, which she maintained (with help in later years, as her health failed) until 1867. This 1880 publication, edited with a biographical introduction by the entomologist Eleanor Ormerod (1828–1901), summarises Molesworth's records for the period 1825–50. Ormerod explains the methods and instruments Molesworth used, and provides a complete record of the phenological detail over a 25-year period: she therefore omits what she considers less relevant meteorological data. The records enable year-on-year comparisons of dates on which flowers bloomed or migratory birds arrived, and this information remains of use to anyone studying long-term changes in climate.
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