Thursday, June 14, 2012

Edwin Butler Honoured

I've written before about Edwin Butler - the man who was born in Kilkee Co. Clare and went on to become known as the greatest plant pathologists and mycologists of his generation.

Now, Butler has been honoured in his native Kilkee with the unveiling of a plaque at Kilkee Library last month.

Born in Kilkee in 1874, Butler went on to study medicine at Queen's College Cork (now UCC) but never practiced. Developing an interest in fungi and plant pathology, he was eventually to become known as the "Father of Indian Plant Pathology" and the founding director of the Imperial Bureau of Mycology at Kew, London.

Butler's book 'Plant Pathology' was to become the international standard for teaching the subject. Butler was a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) and he was knighted in 1939.

Tuesday's event was attended by Prof. Peter Jones, Acting Head of Plant Science at University College Cork who gave a brief outline of Butler's connection to Cork.

His Excellency, the Indian Ambassador to Ireland Mr. Debasish Chakravarti was also in attendance to mark Butler's contribution to science in India. The Mayor of Co. Clare, Pat Hayes unveiled a plaque in Butler's honour at the newly renovated Kilkee Library.

Another in series of fitting tributes to one of Ireland's neglected scientific heroes.


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