SHELLEY, George Ernest.

A Monograph of the Nectariniidae, or Family of Sunbirds.


A Monograph of the Nectariniidae, or Family of Sunbirds.

London, The Author, [1876-80].

In stock


First edition of this important monograph, one of 250 copies only. Amongst the most beautiful of bird monographs, the Nectariniidae illustrates 138 species, including two new genera and ten new species. The work appeared in twelve parts from July 1876 to February 1880, the original title of the work being A Monograph of the Cinnyridae.

Shelley acknowledges the importance of Keuleman’s specialist knowledge in his preface: “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 incorprated in my work.”

‘An excellent monograph of an interesting family of birds’ (Zimmer).


First edition. 4to., cviiii, 393 pp., 121 hand-coloured lithographs by Keulemans; plates clean and fresh, original upper wrappers bound-in, original prospectus with specimen plate tipped-in, later half tan morocco gilt, tiny repair to blank outer corner of title, a very good copy.

Provenance: Zoological Society of London (stamps to front free endpaper, title page, and dedication leaf; Kemerton Court (armorial bookplate).


Nissen, IVB, 873; Wood page 566.


Stock ID: 96628