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Dorothea Bate: Carmarthen scientist receives blue plaque



  Dorothea Bate and Napier House Image copyright
Trustees of the Natural History Museum / Richard Law

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Dorothea Bate was born in Napier House in Carmarthen

The woman who is believed to have been the first to work as a scientist at the Natural History Museum in London has a dedicated blue plaque in her hometown.

Dorothea Bate, born in 1

878, had little formal education, but a fascination with wildlife and nature prompted her to leave Carmarthenshire at age 19 and request a job at the museum.

He spent more than 50 years there and led expeditions all over the world.

The plaque will be unveiled at Napier House in Carmarthen where she was born.

Mrs. Bates became an expert in archeozoology, the study of animal remains, and her greatest discoveries included fossilized elephants and the bones of a giant tortoise in Bethlehem.

The plaque will be dedicated by paleobiologist Tori Herridge at a ceremony organized by the Civic Society of Carmarthen at 18:00 GMT on Wednesday.

Dr. Herridge said: "She is very special, can you imagine in 1898 marching to the museum and asking to see the bird healer? [19] 659007]" I hope that anyone who passes by Napier House and look at that plate blue, make them think that it's interesting, who is she? & # 39;

"Small signs could open people's minds to a world they were not previously"

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Ms. Bate's first job at the museum was to classify The skins of birds, but the focus of what became his life's work was to explore how and why different species adapt and change. 19659007] She studied fossils and was fascinated by the archeology that led her to specialize in archeozoology.

Dr. Herridge said that his work at the museum came from a passion for the natural world that his education gave him "money and the freedom to explore."

"She had a lot of confidence in herself, she was very intelligent, determined and totally interested in the subject she wanted to study".

Mrs. Bate's expeditions took her to places as far away as Cyprus, Malta, Crete, China and Palestine, from where her findings were taken to the museum in Kensington.

Contrary to what might be expected, Dr. Herridge said that when Mrs. Bate was in Cyprus in 1905, she was one of the four scientists involved in the excavations.

During World War II, Ms. Bate worked in the zoo branch of the museum in Tring, Hertfordshire, and became his official in charge.

She was elected to the Royal Geographical Society in 1940 and continued working until her death in 1951.


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