Banks Joseph

English naturalist, traveler, president of the Royal Geographical Society.
Born in London, educated at Harrow and Eton, then at Oxford. At the age of 14, the boy decided to become a nerd. The first lessons he received from an old village woman who taught him the secrets of herbal medicine. Banks' sense of purpose allowed him to overcome all obstacles. Learning that Oxford did not lecture on his subject, he went to Cambridge and brought back from there I. Lyons, a young nerd who became his personal tutor.
At the age of 18, Banks received an inheritance from his father, which gave him £ 6,000 in annual income. Shortly after the death of his father, he left school and in 1766 made a trip to Labrador and Newfoundland with botanical research. In 1767, he was accepted into the Royal Geographical Society, though, rather, not for his achievements, but as a gifted and promising lover. But after a short time, Banks showed that he was not an amateur in science.
Together with Dr. Solander, a Swede, a student of Carl Linnaeus, assistant librarian in the British Museum, he traveled around the world with the great James Cook on the ship Endeavor in the years 1768-1771, visiting Australia, New Zealand, New Guinea, the Malay Archipelago, Oceania Islands. In New Zealand, Banks managed to discover an unknown plant species, to make valuable observations on geography, zoology and botany.
Banks and Solander's next journey was a trip to Iceland in 1772.
Shortly thereafter, Banks received his doctorate from the University of Oxford, and in 1778 replaced John Pringle as president of the Royal Society, which he held until the end of his life. Other honorary awards were the appropriation of the nobility, the awarding of the Order of the Bath and the election of members of the Privy Council.
Until the end of his days, Banks remained an avid collector and explorer of nature, but his posts were increasingly drawing him into public life. Numerous public duties distracted the scientist from his own research. He helped other researchers a lot, having managed to publish few of his own works.


Banks Memorial in Lincoln


He died in London. He was buried at St. Leonard's cemetery. In 2001, the Banks Memorial was opened in Lincoln, Lincolnshire.


Banks Island

(view from space)

An island in the west of the Canadian Arctic archipelago. Opened and named by  W. Parry in 1820.

Peninsula in the north of Canada in Bathurst Bay.


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