This blog focuses on the discovery of the wealth of Irish and Indian plant specimens collected by Henry (Harry) Corbyn Levinge (1828-1896) rediscovered in the Herbarium here at the National Botanic Gardens. Levinge grew up in Knock Drin Castle in County Westmeath. He graduated from Trinity College Dublin and was employed by the East India Railway Company being promoted to Chief Engineer and Secretary to the Bengal Government. He held this post until his retirement from service in 1883. During his time in India he collected Ferns and amassed a collection of hundreds of species, most of which were thought to have been lost in a warehouse fire in London, salvaged specimens are being discovered by Dr. Lois Kinneen a volunteer researcher in the herbarium. After retirement he returned to Knock Drin in Co Westmeath and started to collect the Irish plants, Nora Pacenti an Erasmus student from Croatia has been finding previously undocumented samples within the Irish collection here at the Herbarium and has recorded documented over 1400 of his Irish samples to date… with still lots more to discover ! Lois and Nora with the help of other weekly volunteers Anne Kenna, Dean Rickaby (TCD) and Aidan Diskin are discovering new Levinge specimens daily.


1st July 2019

Author: Dr. Lois Kinneen, Nora Pacenti (Erasmus MSc.) & Dr. Noeleen Smyth (NBG Conservation Botanist)