London: Alecto Historical Editions in association with the British Museum (Natural History), 1980-1990. Folio, 738 copper-engraved plates in titled window mounts, colour printed a la poupee in up to 17 colours with additional watercolour touches from the original plates after Sydney Parkinson, Frederick Polydore Nodder, John Frederick Miller, James Miller, John Cleverly and Thomas Burgis; the Supplement with five copper-engraved plates in titled window mounts; the Catalogue with eight copper-engraved uncolored duplicate plates. 35 solander boxes (including Supplement), broadsheet folio [29" x 22 1/2"] and one volume Catalogue, folio. The Florilegium and Supplement in 101 original cloth-backed portfolios contained within 35 dark-green cloth-covered solander boxes by G. Ryder and Co.; the Catalogue bound in half dark green morocco, top edge gilt. Some blemishes to the window mounts but not affecting the images.
The first complete edition of the engravings after Sydney Parkinson's magnificent drawings, made in the course of Captain Cook's First Voyage, during which Banks collected over 800 previously unknown specimens. This is number one of 100 numbered copies. Although some 743 plates after drawings by Parkinson and others were engraved under Banks' supervision by 18 engravers over a period of 13 years, and manuscript descriptions of the specimens had been prepared by Daniel Solander, Banks' ambition to publish the drawings made by Sydney Parkinson during the Endeavour's circumnavigation was never realised. On Banks's death, these plates were bequeathed to the British Museum, where they remain. The first publication of a substantial selection of the plates was in 1900-1905, when monochrome lithographic edition was produced. In 1974 the Lion and Unicorn Press published 30 uncoloured engravings in an edition limited to 100 copies.
The complete set is published in 35 parts with all plates and accompanying letterpress contained in 35 green cloth covered Solander boxes with printed labels. The breakdown of the set is as follows:
Parts 1-15 Australia 337 plates
Part 16 Brazil 23 plates
Parts 17-18 Java 30 plates
Part 19 Madeira 11 plates
Parts 20-27 New Zealand 183 plates
Parts 28-31 The Society Islands 89 plates
Parts 32-34 Tierra del Fuego 65 plates
Supplement 5 plates
In the preface to the accompanying Catalogue J. G. Studholme writes " finally I must thank the Master Printer, Edward Egerton-Williams, whose experience in colour printing led directly to the decision to print and publish the Florilegium in colour and whose dedication, technical skills and attention to detail has resulted in the production, over a period of more than ten years, of 86,000 perfect colour engravings... In the early stages of this publication, a distinguished Professor Emeritus of Botany at a Dutch University, comparing Banks' Florilegium with the University's many acquisitions of treasures from the Orient remarked that, for him, it represented a supreme example of eighteenth-century European civilisation. I can think of no higher compliment"
Price: $125,000.00 AU