Henry C. Andrews was an extremely talented and atypical botanical artist. Atypical in that he was not only the artist, but the engraver, colorist, and publisher in a times when most botanical artist were only employed to "draw plates." The Botanist's Repository were his first publication. The series was published in London in ten volumes between 1797 and 1812 and provided affordable images of plants to the growing population of amateur gardeners in Britain. Andrews images have a more artistic appeal compared to the more scientific presentation of rival publications. Decorative and colorful, Andrews' prints are a lovely representation of early nineteenth century botanical illustration and this volume is an excellent example of his work.
William Paul Crillon Barton (1786-1856), native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was a physician and botanist who served in the U.S. Navy in the War of 1812 and subsequently worked as a professor of botany at the University of Pennsylvania. He knew and collaborated with many natural scientists throughout the first half of the nineteenth century. He had strong ties to members of the Lewis and Clark expedition, Alexander Wilson, Thomas Nuttall, and others. His best known works were: Vegetable Materia Medica of the United States (1817-19) and Flora of North America (1821-23). This study of the names of indigenous plants found in a ten mile radius of Philadelphia contains indices in both volumes and those for "English and Vulgar names" most useful. This is a lovely and carefully produced set by Mathew Carey and his son Henry. $650
John and Thomas Doughty. Cabinet of Natural History and American Rural Sports with Illustrations. 3 quarto volumes. Philadelphia: J. & T. Doughty, 1830 (1832, 1833). Three engraved pictorial title pages, engraved frontispiece portraits of William Bartram and Charles Willson Peale, 53 hand colored plates, two uncolored engraved plates, one full-page woodcut plate and 17 woodcuts among the text pages. In volume one pages 169-72 come after page 132. Plates on superior paper are generally excellent and with new tissue guards; text variously spotted and brown as with all copies that we have seen. A few text leaves torn or repaired. Blue paper wrappers for the four parts of the last volume are bound into the end and include a list of agents. Half calf bindings with gold stamping on spine. A fine and scarce set. Bennett, 35; Howes, D433.
Here is one of the great works in American natural history. While Lucien Bonaparte was finishing Alexander Wilson's American Ornithology, and John James Audubon was beginning his great projects, the Doughty brothers produced a book with many anecdotes about the social impact of natural history and sport in America. Titian Ramsay Peale had returned from the Long expedition and made available new pictures of the animals found in the American west. Other artists included M.E.D. Brown, George Lehman, Edwin Landseer, J.G. Cloney, and the major contributor being Thomas Doughty himself. The one engraving accompanying the 52 lithographs is John Sartain's print of the "Common Deer"--one of his earliest works done in America.
As the production on the third volume began, Thomas Doughty left the project to pursue a painting career in New York. He gained immortality as a founder of the Hudson River School of painters, but he left behind a sinking ship that never finished its plan. The last volume is very scarce, and the struggling nature of the enterprise contributed to the high incidence of all these prints being scattered. Here is a complete set of the text and all the plates. $12,600
Charles Antoine Lemaire. Le Jardin Fleuriste, Journal Général Des Progrès et des Intérêts Horticoles et Botaniques. Gand: F. & E. Gyselynck, 1854. Octavo. Bound in new cloth binding. Volume 4. 96 chromolithographed plates, including five double page imgaes. Missing 4 plates, some text and with top corners cut out of a couple pages. Else, very good condition. Denver.
A rare volume from Lemaire's wonderful work on flowers of the garden. Lemaire was a botanist who worked at a nursery in Paris, developing a scholarly reputation which led to his position as editor of L'Horticulteur Universel and this Le Jardin Fleuriste. Issued between 1851 and 1854, the latter filled four volumes with 408 plates of beautiful flowers produced in chromolithography. While incomplete, this is still a trove that documents not only the state of knowledge of these flowers in the mid-nineteenth century, but also the wonderful quality of the production of chromolithographed botanical art. $1,800
Thomas Say. The Complete Writings of Thomas Say on the Entomology of North America. New York: Bailliére Brothers, 1859. Edited by John L. Le Conte. 2 octavo volumes. 54 etchings by C. Tiebout and John E. Gavit. Original hand color. Half leather; some rubbing but overall very good. Interior clean. Denver.
A nice example of Dr. Le Conte's reprint edition of Thomas Say's seminal American Entomology. This was one of the pioneering works on the subject, so much so that Say (1787-1834) is considered the 'father of American entomology.' One of the founders of the Academy of Natural Sciences, Say was also the curator of the American Philosophical Society, a professor of natural history at the University of Pennsylvania, and was one of the scientific party on Major Stephen Long's western expeditions to the Rocky Mountains. His work on American insects demonstrated that America as well as Europe had natural scientists of note. The fifty four plates in this volume are the same as from the first edition (12824-28), based on the drawing of artists as C.A. LeSueur, W.W. Wood, H.B. Bridport and Say's friend and fellow Long expedition member, Titian Ramsey Peale. Also included in this edition is a memoir about Say by his fellow natural scientist George Ord. This work is an excellent example of both the historic import and aesthetic quality of early American natural science. $1,600
James Britten. European Ferns. London: Cassell, Petter, Galpin & Co., ca. 1880. Chromolithography by Vincent Brooks Day & Son Lith. Large octavo. Green cloth boards with decorative gold stamping. Original decorative end papers. Presentation label on inside front cover: "Exhibition of Works of Pupils of Schools of Design, Colony of Victoria, 1884". 30 bright chromolithographed plates and 108 wood engravings. Corners bumped and worn, front cover slightly shaken; else, very good condition.
A handsome and informative natural history with lovely chromolithographed plates. $575
B.H. Warren, M. D. Report on the Birds of Pennsylvania. With Special Reference to the Food-Habits, based on over Four Thousand Stomach Examinations. Harrisburg: E. K. Meyers, 1890. Second edition, revised and augmented. Large octavo. 3/4 green pebbled calf over green cloth; brown calf gold-stamped decorative spine with raised bands (refurbished), aeg. (ii)-(xiv), 1-434. Very good condition.
This handsome volume provides physical and behavioral descriptions of the many bird species found in Pennsylvania. The 100 attractive color plates are lithographs after J. J. Audubon's Birds of America. $325
J.G. Wood. Animate Creation; Popular Edition of "Our Living World," A Natural History. Folio. Bound in half leather with pebble grained buckram boards; gold stamping on spines and covers. New York: Selmar Hess, 1898. Interiors complete with few flaws and unusually slight browning. Tall, heavy volumes.
These fine natural history books offer a vast compendium of information from leading American biologists and an outstanding presentation of art depicting life on earth. The set has beautiful chromolithographs by Louis Prang and company mounted on separate pages, in addition to full-page wood engravings, and innumerable wood engravings throughout the text. Such works by American artists and scientists are quickly becoming scarce as those in less durable bindings have fallen apart and the prints appear for sale as separate entities. This attractive example of book publishing at the end of the nineteenth century is a tribute to American art and science.
Britain's Birds and Their Nests: Described by A. Landsborough Thomson. Illustrated with 132 drawings in Colour by George Rankin. Octavo. [i] - xxvii, 1-.340 pp. 132 plates. [with erratum slips for plates 94 and 100]. Edinburgh and London: Chambers, 1910. Lovely gold stamped publisher's cloth binding. Some slight bumps. Ref.: Zimmer, Ayer Ornithological Library, p.633. Mullens and Swann, Bibliography of British Ornithology, pp.579-80.
All plates are colored using screen printing and show each species of bird with a nest and egg for each. Arthur Landsborough Thomson (b. 1890) was a well acknowledged scientist from Edinburgh and Aberdeen and twenty years of age when this work was published. It is his best known work Rankin's illustrations later became very popular when some species appeared on cigarette cards. This is a fine, indexed compendium. $650
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