Lansdown Guilding was born in St Vincent in 1797 and schooled at Oxford, England. A botanist and biologist, Guilding was elected a fellow of the Linnean Society when he was only 20 years old.
Returning to St. Vincent in 1817 he began sending research papers, drawings and specimens back to the Society which are today preserved in the collections of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew and the British Museum. Species of starfish, centipedes, beetles and the St. Vincent parrot were named for him, as well as a moss and many flowering plants.
In 1831 Guilding travelled to Bermuda for his health, arriving in early October. He died in Hamilton, aged 33, 17 days after his arrival. There is no record of his visiting the island previously, so it is believed his paintings were done in the days before his death.
The works are from an album titled The Natural History of Bermuda, 1831, by Rev. Guilding which was purchased by J. Leslie Darling at a Christie’s auction in 1963 and donated to the Bermuda Historical Monuments Trust, the precursor of the Bermuda National Trust.