Regnum Animale.

Eur 7,500 / USD 8,200
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Natuurkundige beschryving eener uitmuntende verzameling van zeldsaame gedierten, bestaande in Oost-en Westindische Viervoetige dieren, vogelen en slangen, weleer leevend voorhanden geweest zynde, buiten den Haag, op het Kleine Loo van Z.D.H. den Prins van Oranje-Nassau. Amsterdam, J.B. Elwe, (1766-) 1804. 34 parts (bound in 1 volume). 4to (250 x 195mm). pp. (8), (387), with 1 handcoloured engraved frontispiece and 35 handcoloured engraved plates. Contemporary half calf, richly gilt decorated spine with gilt lettering.

34 booklets describing exotic animals

Vosmaer produced a series of 34 booklets describing exotic animals that were published between 1766 and 1805 in both Dutch and French, these were gathered together after Vosmaer's death."Vosmaer was advisor to Prince Willem V whose mother Princess Anna started a zoological cabinet and a menagerie on the grounds of their summer palace Het Loo near Apeldoorn. Many animals were imported from Borneo, the Philippines, Surinam, Cape of Good Hope and even from Japan. During decades tracts were published giving a description of an animal to which a hand-coloured copperplate was added ... (Landwehr 204). According to Rookmaker however the location mentionned by Landwehr is incorrect. "More interesting to us at present is the menagerie started in 1756 by princess Anna at the Kleine Loo in Voorburg, near The Hague. Notwithstanding the similarity in name, the Oude Loo and the Kleine Loo must not be confused, being located in quite different parts of the country" (Rookmaker p. 120). 22 plates concern mammals, 10 birds and 3 serpents. The plates are engraved by Simon Fokke and many of them are based on original watercolours by Aert Schouman. 12 papers concern South African animals. There is also a noteworthy description of the Orang-outang from Borneo, with two plates. Booklet 14 also inludes number 15 (see index leaf), for this reason bibliographies often quote the wrong number. A fine copy of this rare beautifully illustrated work.

Wood 615; B.M.(N.H.) V, 238; Nissen ZBI, 4293.