London: Trubner and Co, 1876-1876. Quarto, 104 handcoloured lithographs and chromolithographs by Keulemans and others. Publisher's green cloth, some occasional spots mainly to the endpapers and early leaves, the bookplate of H. Bradley Martin, a very good set.
George Dawson Rowley (1822-1878) was an English amateur ornithologist, a friend of John Wolley (1823-1859) and with Wolley enthusiastically researched the history of the Great Auk. He translated and published the works of the Russian geographer and explorer Nikolai Przhevalsky, the discoverer of the Mongolian Steppe horse that bears his name.
"This valuable serial was published at irregular intervals in 14 parts ... written ... mostly by Rowley, but containing important papers by Dresser, Alfred Newton, R. B. Sharpe, P. L. Sclater and other noted ornithologists." (Wood p. 543). The illustrations are very good and show Keulemans at his most interesting. His chromolithographs are outstanding and the plate 'Mother Carey and her chickens' (a witch on a broomstick flying over the ocean) deserves special mention. There are several papers on New Guinea and a monograph, with Keulemans' handcoloured lithographs, on Kiwis.
PROVENANCE: H. Bradley Martin (1906-1988) was one of the greatest bibliophiles of the twentieth century and his collection of bird books, sold by Sotheby's New York over a series of sales starting June 1989, will never be equalled.
Anker 432; Fine bird books (reprint) p. 137; Nissen IVB 798; Wood p. 543; Zimmer p. 533.
Price: $12,500.00 AU