De historia Piscium libri quatuor, jussu & sumptibus Societatis Regiae Londinensis editi ... Totum opus recognovit, coaptavit, supplevit, librum etiam primum & secundum integros adjecit J. Raius e Societate Regia.
Oxonii, e Theatro Sheldoniano, 1686. Folio (367 x 245mm). With 1 engraved frontispiece, 1 engraved title-vignette and 187 engraved plates. Contemporary blind pressed vellum, small split on upper cover hinge.
A fine copy of the rare first edition of the first large work on fishes in England, marking a new era in ichthyology. Although Ray states with his characteristic modesty to be only the editor of the manuscript of his deceased friend Willughby (1635-1672), his share in compiling the material for the work should not be neglected. The text was printed at the expense of bishop John Fell (founder of the University Press), the plates engraved by Paul van Somers under the supervision of Martin Lister at the expense of several members of the Royal Society of London, among them particularly the Society's president Samuel Pepys to whom the work is dedicated. Provenance: Armorial bookplate of Falkenhof. Dean III, 331; Keynes 46; Nissen, 'Schöne Fischbücher', 130.
Item nr. 7356
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