This Day in History: 1845-07-01
James Cosmo Melvill (1845 – 1929) was born on this day. He was a British a naturalist interested in both botany and malacology, owner of a large British shell cabinet. Melvill started collecting at age eight, when his aunt gave him a sea shell collection from Mauritius and continued collecting not only shells, but also botanical and entomological objects from all over the world. He amassed a shell collection comprising over 22, 000 species before disposing of it to fellow malacologist John Tomlin (c. 1919), the combined collections are now deposited in the National Museum of Wales as the Melvill-Tomlin collection.
Melvill described more than 1,000 new molluscs between 1881 and 1928 and is honoured in the names of
a number of species under melvilli(i).