Grew, Nehemiah


Grew, Nehemiah

(baptized Sept. 26, 1641, Mancetter Parish, Warwickshire, Eng.—died March 25, 1712, London) British botanist. A physician and professor, Grew's training in animal anatomy led to his interest in that of plants. His writings noted the existence of cells and coined such terms as radicle (for the embryonic root), plume (for the primary bud of a plant embryo; now called plumule), and parenchyma (for unspecialized cells). His Anatomy of Plants (1682) contained the first thorough account of plant anatomy; its many excellent wood engravings represented the three-dimensional, microscopic structure of plant tissue. He presented, among other fundamental discoveries, the suggestion that the stamen (with its pollen) is the male sex organ and the pistil corresponds to the female sex organ. With Marcello Malpighi, Grew is considered a founder of the science of plant anatomy.

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