My Natural History Hero Dorothea Bate

**UPDATE: you can now listen to the programme online here**

The BBC have very wisely decided to make a programme all about one of my favourite scientists, Dorothea Bate. It’s only 15 minutes long, mind, which means it can only scrape the surface. But I get to wax lyrical about her, and how she has directly influenced my work, and how I’ve been able to follow in her footsteps – literally. And even better, her biographer Karolyn Shindler, is involved so the historical content should be top notch.

Pouring over Dorothea Bate's maps and diaries from her expedition to Crete in 1904. These are now stored in the Natural History Museum's archives. Clockwise from bottom right: me, Adrian Lister, David Richards, Kirsty Penkman

Pouring over Dorothea Bate’s maps and diaries from her expedition to Crete in 1904. These are now stored in the Natural History Museum’s archives. Clockwise from bottom right: me, Adrian Lister, David Richards, Kirsty Penkman

It’s on at 13:45 on the 30th September on Radio 4, and is one of the 10 programmes in the Natural History Heroes series running on BBC Radio 4 from the 28th September. **UPDATE: Listen online & read more about the programme here**

George Iliopoulos and I hunting for Kutri Cave, in Crete, where Dorothea Bate found fossils of dwarf deer. Imagine doing this in Edwardian dress! Photo (c) David Richards.

George Iliopoulos and I hunting for Kutri Cave, in Crete, where Dorothea Bate found fossils of dwarf deer. Imagine doing this in Edwardian dress! Photo (c) David Richards.

In the meantime, here is a short youtube video about my research on the world’s smallest mammoth here (with nice shots of the fossils and the ‘beastly hot’ trip to Cape Maleka):

And here are two posts I wrote about Dorothea Bate for TrowelBlazers:

The Dynamite Discoveries of Dorothea Bate — yes, she really did use dynamite. I wish she had used less.

Dorothea Bate & the Star(key) of Bethlehem — Dorothea’s excavations in Bethlehem in the 1930s, and how she was royally screwed over (technical term) by James Starkey.

But really, the best place to start for a proper Dorothea Bate-fest is with Karolyn Shindler’s excellent biography Discovering Dorothea. Criminally it is out of print, but you can still buy a second hand copy. PUBLISHERS!  It is time for an updated edition!

Natural History Heroes: Dorothea Bate will be broadcast at 13:45 on the 30th September on BBC Radio 4. Details here

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