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Professor Baytop, who died in 2002, was Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy at Istanbul University. He specialised in the uses of Turkish plants, especially those of medicinal value. He also collected and dried over 10,000 plant specimens which are housed in Istanbul University’s herbarium. Brian Mathew pays tribute to Turkey’s pre-eminent botanist in Cornucopia 27
In its heyday the Istanbul tulip was the most fashionable of flowers, as Rüstem Pasha’s mosque shows. The highly coveted bulbs changed hands for small fortunes. Sadly, this tulip is now extinct, but these exquisite paintings testify to its delicate beauty. Turhan Baytop, doyen of Turkish bulb experts, recalls the golden age reflected in a priceless 18th-century album
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