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[A Monograph of the Nectariniidae, or Family of Sun-Birds].

Stock Code 108842

[London, published by the author, 1876-1880].

Original price $20,000.00 - Original price $20,000.00
Original price
$20,000.00 - $20,000.00
Current price $20,000.00
One of only 20 large paper copies. Extremely rare large paper copy of this 'excellent monograph of an interesting family of birds' (Zimmer).

The standard quarto edition of the work was originally published in 12 parts, limited to 250 copies, and Shelley acknowledged Keulemans' contribution in the introduction: 'The illustrations, which form such an important portion of my Monograph, have all been executed by Mr. Keulemans, whose name is sufficient guarantee for the accuracy of the details and for high artistic skill. The latter is rendered perhaps more striking from his being acquainted with this family of birds in their native haunts; and his notes upon the Sun-birds inhabiting Prince's Island have been incorporated in my work.'

This folio issue of the plates is not recorded in any of the standard bibliographies. It appears to have been issued for a few special recipients; one copy contained a pencilled note, apparently contemporary, indicating that it was a 'special copy prepared for the author on larger paper' (Sotheby's, 22 October 1998, lot 215).

One of 20 large paper copies; folio (37.9 x 27.8 cm); 121 fine hand-coloured lithographed plates containing 138 specimens by and after J.G. Keulemans, without title or text (as issued), occasional light offsetting, light spotting to preliminary and terminal leaves, otherwise internally very clean and fresh; contemporary half maroon morocco, spine with five raised bands, gilt in six compartments, gilt lettering to second compartment, corners and spine rubbed, upper cover slightly sunned, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers.

Fine Bird Books p142; Nissen IVB, 873; Zimmer p588 (all for the 4to edition).

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