image EL_L2_17_Fig
Image number: RS.15756
Credit: ©The Royal Society

Observations on the Jesuit's bark, or cinchona


28 November 1687


Unknown, Artist

Object type

Archive reference number

Manuscript page number




height (page): 195mm
width (page): 155mm


Content object


Five figures in a letter from Antoni van Leeuwenhoek to the Royal Society. The original drawings are lost.

Fig. 1: a piece of cinchona bark drawn through the microscope
Fig. 2: the same piece of bark as it appears to the naked eye
Fig. 3: a single such particle
Fig. 4: a few such particles together
Fig. 5: a small piece of cinchona bark cut crosswise.

Object history

At the meeting of the Royal Society on 1 December 1687, ‘A letter of Mr. Leewenhoeck, containing his microscopical observations on cochineal and the Jesuit’s bark, or chinachina, was produced, and ordered to be translated’ (Birch 4:556).

Printed images taken from a published version of the letter (the same plate is in the Dutch and Latin versions):
Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, Vervolg der Brieven, geschreven aan de Wytvermaarde Koninglijke Societeit tot Londen (Leiden: C. Boutesteijn, 1687), pp. 141-55.

Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, Continuatio Epistolarum (Leiden: Boutesteyn, 1689), pp. 113-24.

Related Fellows

Antoni van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723, Dutch), Naturalist

Associated place

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