The publishers advertised On Naval Timber and Arboriculture diligently and over at least an 18 month period following its publication. Mike Sutton has tracked down many examples, of which four are referred to below (Edinburgh Literary Journal (1830), London Literary Gazette (1831), Magazine of Natural History (1831), and Encyclopaedia Britannica 7th Edition (1832)). I’ve also found a second advertisement in the Edinburgh Literary Journal (1831), and doubtless there are other examples out there.
Advert #1. Anonymous. “A treatise on naval timber, marine, and arboriculture”. Edinburgh Literary Journal, or Weekly Register of Criticism and Belles Lettres, Vol 4 (July-Dec 1830), No. 110 Dec 18 (Advertising Section), p.49
Interestingly, the first advert for the book, “published this day”, was on Dec18 1830, suggesting that technically the publishing date of the book should be 1830, not 1831. The advert is matter-of-fact, and lists the authors that Matthew criticises: “the imperfect acquaintance of recent authors with these subjects freely exposed”. The list of authors criticised includes J. C. Loudon (“Author of the Encyclopaedia of Gardening”). It’s possible that Matthew wrote his own text for these adverts, because this indirect way of referring to Loudon is also seen in the book itself. There is a very brief mention that “the subject of species and variety, are considered”.
Published this day, in 8vo. price 12s.
A TREATISE on NAVAL TIMBER, MARINE, and ARBORICULTURE.
To which are added, Critical Notes on Authors who have recently treated the subject of PLANTING;
Messrs. Monteath, Nicol and Sang, Hillington, Forsyth, Withers, Cruickshank, Sir Walter Scott, Sir Henry Steuart, and the Author of the Encyclopaedia of Gardening; thus presenting a concise view of what is known of the Science and Practice of Arboriculture at the present day.
By PATRICK MATTHEW.
In this volume directions are given for the pruning and training of Naval Timber, and for the Treatment of Forest Trees, from the gathering of the seed till maturity, including the proper location, and the different modes of Planting and Sowing, regulated by circumstances. The influence of improper treatment of the seed and young plant, the principle of the natural location of vegetables, and the subject of species and variety, are considered. The qualities and adaptation of Naval Timber, especially of Larch, are described; the imperfect acquaintance of recent authors with these subjects freely exposed; and the prospects and true policy of Britain, as the first naval power, pointed out.
ADAM BLACK, Edinburgh; LONGMAN, REES, ORME, BROWN, and GREEN, London.
Advert #2. Anonymous. “A treatise on naval timber, marine, and arboriculture”. London Literary Gazette, and Journal of Belles Lettres, Arts, Sciences, etc., (1831), No. 730 Jan 15 (Advertising Section), p.47
This is more or less the same, word for word, as the Edinburgh Literary Journal (1830) advert, so it is not repeated here. Note that Matthew’s book is also given notice in the “List of New Books” section of issue No. 729 (Jan 8, p.28).
Advert #3. Anonymous. “A treatise on naval timber, marine, and arboricultural”. Magazine of Natural History (1831), January issue (Advertising Section), p.571
This is more or less the same, word for word, as the Edinburgh Literary Journal (1830) advert, so it is not repeated here.
Advert #4. Anonymous. “Scientific arboriculture, for the use of British proprietors”. Edinburgh Literary Journal, or Weekly Register of Criticism and Belles Lettres, Vol 5 (1831), No. 133 May 28 (Advertising Section), p.46
The publisher’s re-advertised the book in the Edinburgh Literary Journal in May 1831. The advert says the book is “published this day” but clearly this is an error. The advert has been lengthened by adding quotes from a number of reviews. Also the emphasis has switched from listing the authors criticised by Matthew to instead reinforcing his ideas on variation and natural selection. Unfortunately, the emphasis is on natural selection as a mechanism for keeping species in their place, rather than on evolution. The advert even throws in a quote from Milton (Arcades, 1633) for good measure:
“The principle also which in the untouched wild “keeps unsteady nature to her law,” inducing conformity in species, and preventing deterioration of breed, is explained”.
SCIENTIFIC ARBORICULTURE, FOR THE USE OF BRITISH PROPRIETORS.
Published this day, In 8vo, price 15s.
A TREATISE on NAVAL TIMBER and ARBORICULTURE, describing New and Important modes of Cultivation, with Critical Notes on Authors who have recently treated the subject of PLANTING, presenting a concise view of what is known of the Science and Practice of Arboriculture at the present day.
By PATRICK MATTHEW.
In embracing the philosophy of plants, the interesting subject of species and variety is considered,– the principle of the natural location of vegetables is distinctly shown,– the principle also which in the untouched wild “keeps unsteady nature to her law,” inducing conformity in species, and preventing deterioration of breed, is explained,– and the causes of the variation and deterioration of cultivated forest trees is pointed out.
“This work is evidently the production of sound practical knowledge,”– Country Times.
“In recommending this work to landed proprietors, we shall only remark, that it displays an intelligent and cultivated mind, and an evident practical study of the subject.”– Farmers’ Journal.
“We consider Naval Timber to be an extraordinary book, containing much amusement, much instruction, and a considerable sprinkling of eccentricity.”– Perthshire Courier.
“This work contains a great variety of interesting information. We have perused with much interest and gratification the speculations therein contained, in reference to the moral and physical constitution of the human race.”– Elgin Courier.
ADAM BLACK, Edinburgh; and LONGMAN and Co., London.
Advert #5. Anonymous. “Scientific arboriculture, for the use of British proprietors”. Encyclopaedia Britannica, 7th Edition (1832), Vol 4, p.407
This advertisement is interesting for showing that the publishers were still advertising the book more than a year after its publication. Conveniently, Encyclopaedia Britannica was also published by Adam and Charles Black. Note that although the official publication date for the 7th Edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica was 1842, in reality it was published in instalments starting in 1827. Volume 4 was available in bound form in 1832, which explains why all the books in the publishers’ advertising insert (“lately published by Adam Black, Edinburgh, and Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown and Green, London“) are from 1831-2 (for example, Memoirs of the Wernerian Natural History Society, Vol 6). Coincidentally, Volume 21 (the last volume, which really was published in 1842) contains a citation of Matthew’s book in its article on “Timber”. The advert is very similar to the Edinburgh Literary Journal (1831) advert, except the quotes from reviews have been updated. Even the aggressively negative review from the Edinburgh Literary Journal is quoted as a “Sample of Venom”, perhaps to pique the reader’s interest!