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Olivier de Serres, French Soil Scientist

Olivier de Serres, French Soil Scientist

C030/4208

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39.5 MB (3.5 MB compressed)

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26.9 x 36.8 cm ⏐ 10.6 x 14.5 in (300dpi)

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SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE SOURCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Olivier de Serres (1539-1619) was a French author and soil scientist whose Theatre d'Agriculture (1600) was the text book of French agriculture in the 17th century. His book was notable for its recommendation to wine growers that they plant 5-6 varieties in their vineyards to balance the risk of a crop failing, and the early advocating of crop rotation. Le theatre de l'agriculture recommends metayage (sharecropping) as cash tenants took all the risks so would demand lower rent while hired labour was expensive to manage. Sharecroppers administer themselves and risks are divided with the landlord. Olivier only thought large landowners should take the risk of hiring labourers and running the estate themselves.

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