On the ornithology of New Zealand.

On the ornithology of New Zealand. Walter Buller.

Wellington: Author, 1865. Octavo, with two other papers, very scarce.

The other papers by Buller are Notes on the ornithology of New Zealand (extract from The Ibis 1869) and The story of Papaitonga; or a page of Maori history (Wellington Philosophical Society pp. 572-584).

"There is an interesting history to this publication and you need to be careful how you describe it. Buller's and several other essays were written for the New Zealand Exhibition in Dunedin in 1865, organised and edited by James Hector and printed by Fergusson & Mitchell of Dunedin. But the printers were so slow that copies were not available until several years after the Exhibition. Few were distributed, leaving Hector with the problem of what to do with the large remaining stock. By this time he had moved to Wellington as, among other things, manager of the new New Zealand Institute. The problem of what to do with the Essays was solved by giving them all new title pages and binding sets of them into the first volume of the Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute for 1868, published in 1869. This restricted the print run of this volume of the Transactions to 500 and it was soon exhausted and had to be reprinted in 1875. The original copies of Buller's Essay as printed for the Exhibition by Fergusson and Mitchell have a cover title page headed "New Zealand Exhibition, 1865" and with the imprint at the bottom, "Printed for the Commissioners, by Fergusson and Mitchell . . . MDCCCLXV" The majority of copies as bound into the Transactions are Fergusson and Mitchell's printed sheets, but with a substituted title page reading simply On the ornithology of New Zealand, by Walter Buller, Esq., F.L.S. Your copy is evidently one of the latter, extracted from Vol. 1 of the Transactions." (Ross Galbreath pers com 06/07/2017).

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