Catherine Gage

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Catherine Gage
Born 18 May 1815
County Down, Northern Ireland
Died 16 February 1892(1892-02-16) (aged 76)
Rathlin Island, County Antrim, Northern Ireland
Resting place Rathlin Island
Known for botanical and ornithological illustration
Notable work illustrated Birds of Rathlin Island
Parent(s) Rev. Robert Gage, Catherine Boyd

Catherine Gage (18 May 1815 - 16 February 1892) was an Irish botanist, botanical and ornithological illustrator.[1][2]


Gage's home, Manor House, Rathlin Island

Catherine Gage was born in County Down on 18 May 1815,[3] the daughter of Rev. Robert Gage and Catherine Boyd.[4] Gage lived her entire life in the family home, Manor House on Rathlin Island.[5] Gage died 16 February 1892 and was buried on Rathlin Island.[6]

Illustration work

Gage seems to have devoted a large portion of her life to illustrating a book by her brother Robert Gage on the birds of Rathlin Island that was never published.[7] The book was styled on that of John James Audubon's The Birds of America.[7] During the course of this work she produced over five hundred watercolours of birds.[1] She also illustrated local plants, creating a list for the Botanical Society of Edinburgh, the abstract for which was published in the 1850 Annals and Magazine of Natural History.[6] She also worked with her sister, Barbara Gage, illustrating the local flora as well as the fauna.[8]

When the folio of bird illustrations was auctioned in 2010, they were sold for €13,500.[9]


  1. ^ a b Newmann, Kate. "Catherine Gage (1815 - 1892): Artist". Dictionary of Ulster Biography. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  2. ^ Praeger, Robert Lloyd (1949). Some Irish Naturalists: A Biographical Notebook. Dundalk: Dundalgan Press. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  3. ^ "Catherine Gage". The Peerage. Retrieved 12 July 2015.
  4. ^ Newmann, Kate. "Catherine Gage (1791 - 1852): Historian". Dictionary of Ulster Biography. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  5. ^ McCurdy, John; McCurdy, Jennifer. "Island History". Rathlin Island. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  6. ^ a b Lett, Canon H.W. (1913). "Botanists of the North of Ireland". The Irish Naturalist. 22 (2): 26.
  7. ^ a b Battersby, Eileen (4 October 2010). "Women artists a feature of Slane sale". The Irish Times. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  8. ^ Butler, Patricia (2000). Irish Botanical Illustrators & Flower Painters. Suffolk: Antique Collectors' Club. p. 68. ISBN 9781851493579.
  9. ^ "Slane Auction Brings Over One Million Euro". Antiques and Art Ireland. Retrieved 20 May 2015.

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