Clarence Bicknell (1842-1918) was a man of letters, an artist, author, traveller, botanist, archaeologist, pastor, humanist and Esperantist. Born in London, Clarence was the 13th child of Elhanan Bicknell, whale oil magnate and art patron; after studying at Cambridge University he became an Anglican priest, and from 1879 lived in Bordighera on the Italian coast between Menton and Genoa; he died at his summer home nearby in Casterino in the high mountains of the Franco-Italian border on 17th July 1918.
Today the value of Clarence Bicknell’s pioneering work in several different disciplines is increasingly appreciated by experts – his recording, cataloguing and publication of the prehistoric rock engravings of the Vallée des Merveilles, his drawings of the flowering plants of the Riviera, his creation of the Museo Bicknell in Bordighera, and his contribution to the international language Esperanto.
So, welcome to www.clarencebicknell.com, the web site launched on 14th July 2013 as a commemoration of Clarence's life and work, and as home to the Clarence Bicknell Association. Outside Bordighera, Clarence might be the forgotten genius of 19th century science, arts and crafts. Our activities aim to put that right, i.e. make him known to a wider public across France, Italy, the UK and worldwide.
|News updates... on this web site . Just click here for the latest on Edward Berry Conference, Esperanto and Spanish versions of this web site and new article on Clarence in France magazine. Updated 18 July 2013 MB.|
This website provides
- information for researchers and a place to share the results of research,
- more on Clarence and his talents for those discovering him,
- details of the Clarence Bicknell Association and how to join, and
- plans for celebrating the centenary of his death in 2018, including a definitive book on Clarence, a travelling exhibition, a botanical art prize, lectures in many countries &c.
This website was conceived in spring 2013 by Marcus Bicknell, Clarence’s great-great-nephew and finished with the help of family and friends plus web authors Rémy and Zelda of Lez'Art Creation in Breil, just a few miles from the Vallée des Merveilles. There's more about the web site in the news blog. It gives some insight into Clarence the man, his life and works; you’ll find some images out of the family collection that have not been published anywhere before. It also gives information about the Clarence Bicknell Association and how you can join (click on >Association, >Membership above). We would be delighted to get your feedback via email: or via the Forum on this site for which you will need to be a member.