Hortus Malabaricus is an online community platform serving an interest group around the Hortus Malabaricus, a 17th century 12-volume book illustrating around 700 indigenous plants in the Malabar region of Kerala, India that explains their medicinal properties, with captions in 5 different languages. The content will focus on not only the creation of the Hortus Malabaricus but its artistic, botanical, medicinal and political importance in anno 2012 by interested parties (Dutch, Indian and an international diaspora).

This platform will explore the creation of the Hortus Malabaricus and its historical (oral vs. archival), artistic, medicinal, botanical, linguistic political importance. What makes this 17th c. curio so special is that it is perhaps the first document archiving the first East-West collaboration (Manilal) along with its manifold functions: an illustrated botanical garden, a taxonomy of named plants, a medicinal bible, a translator’s dictionary, or to some an object d’art.


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