[A Group of Six Engravings of Flowers, Insects and Fruits].
The Hague, Gosse, 1719
Maria Sybilla, daughter of the German engraver and publisher Matthias Merian, devoted herself to the study of European insects and their metamorphoses. As a result of the wealth of tropical varieties being brought back by the Dutch West Indies Company, she decided to visit the Dutch colony of Surinam herself to study and paint the insect life there. She sailed with her daughter Dorothea on June 1699 from Amsterdam, and remained in Surinam until 1701. Her work, first published in 1705, 'gave an unprecedented glimpse of the teeming insect life of tropical South America, with gorgeous butterflies flying around luxuriant flowering or fruiting plants and with large many-coloured caterpillars crawling over the leaves. [The plates] have earned Maria Merian an honoured place in the history of tropical entomology as also in botanical illustration' (W.T. Stearn, introduction to The wondrous transformation of caterpillars, 1978).Photography
6engravings by J. Mulder, P. Sluyter and D. Stoopendaal after Merian, with later hand-colour, of flowers, fruits and insects from Dissertatio de Generatione et Metamorphasibus Insectorum Surinamensium; framed & glazed, overall dimensions: 38.2cm by 53.2cm.
Dunthorne 205; Hagen, Entomologica p.536; Hunt 483; Nissen BBI 1341; Pfeiffer, Merian A8.
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