Collecting localities



Biographical data


Roxburgh Jr, William


(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 1: Cyclopaedia of collectors)

(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 5: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement I)


Died: ? Calcutta, Br. India, c. 1806.



Son of William Roxburgh, the first Superintendent of the East India Company’s Garden at Calcutta; in 1799 Assistant of his father, in 1801 working at Chittagong.

He collected living and dried plants for his father in Penang in May-Aug. 1802.1

In 1803 a son of Dr Roxburgh arrived from Ambon with 22000 nutmeg plants and upwards of 6000 cloves in Bencoolen, fort Marlborough, S. Sumatra. Since the death of Charles Campbell, (see there), Roxburgh Jr had been appointed to the superintendence.2 It seems possible that Roxburgh Jr collected during his stay in the Moluccas, as in the herbarium of his father plants from Banda and other Malayan islands are extant (dupl. in Herb. Lambert),3 but these might have been collected by Christopher Smith (see there). Possibly Roxburgh Jr collected in Sumatra. In 1805 he was once more with his father at Calcutta.


collecting localities:7

Malay Islands (1803), Moluccas (1803), Sumatra (1803-04).



The authentic herbarium of W. Roxburgh Sr, including the plants collected by his son, in Herb. Linn. Soc. Lond. [LINN] (since 1913 for the greater part at Kew [K] with Herb. Wallich), in Herb. Kew [K] (ex Herb. Forsyth), Herb. Brit. Mus. [BM], Herb. Decand. (Geneva [G]) (300 nos), Herb. Deless. (Geneva [G]), Herb. Univ. Edinburgh [EGH now in E],4 Herb. Martius (= Brussels [BR]). Evidently Roxburgh specimens are also present in Herb. Sing. [SING].

His Penang plants were described in the ‘Flora Indica’ (1820); some of them have not since been met with in Penang, probably they were cultivated in Penang or wrongly labelled in the Calcutta Gardens.5

An extensive collection of original drawings in the Bot. Gard. Calcutta; a series of copies at Kew and Liverpool; 1825 drawings got into the possession of the Count of Flanders, Brussels.6 14 Watercolour drawings of Malayan plants, with one of a Cycas from the Moluccas in the Libr. Brit. Mus.



(1) cf. Burkill in Gard. Bull. Str. Settlem. 4, 1927, nos 4-5.

(2) cf. Marsden: ‘History of Sumatra’ (1811) p. 148.

(3) cf. Lasègue, Mus. Bot. Deless., 1845, p. 144-145. The assumption that Roxburgh Sr himself made collections in the Malay Archipelago is wrong!

(4) cf. Hook. Journ. Bot. & Kew Gard. Misc. 9, 1857, p. 12.

(5) cf. Journ. Str. Br. Roy. As. Soc. no 25, 1894, p. 163.

(6) cf. A. Decandolle, Phytographie, 1880, p. 444-445.

J.R. Sealy: ‘The Roxburgh Flora Indica drawings at Kew’ (Kew Bull. 1956 (1956/7) p. 297-399).

(7) Data derived from Roxburgh, Hort. Beng. 1914, where he is cited as Mr W.R.


biographical data:

D. Prain: ‘John Roxburgh’ (Journ. Bot. 57, 1919, p. 28-34); Biogr. Index Britten & Boulger, 2nd ed. by Rendle, 1931.