The Botanical Cabinet, consisting of coloured delineations of plants from all countries with a short account of each.
London, J. & A. Arch ..., 1818-1833. 20 volumes. Small-4to (205 x 155mm). With 2000 beautifully hand-coloured engraved plates and 3 plain plates. Contemporary uniform half calf, richly gilt ornamented spines with gilt lettering, marbled sides (9 volumes with hinges repaired, some splits to joints but firm).
A fine uniformly bound complete copy of the rare large-paper edition of one of the finest illustrated botanical series portraying numerous exotic plants. This quarto edition is much more desirable than the 8vo edition which is only partly coloured. 269 of the 2000 plates show Australian plants from New South Wales, New Holland and Botany Bay. Conrad Loddiges and Sons at Hackney owned the largest and most famous nursery in England. Charles Darwin visited the nursery in September 1838 and wrote 'saw in Loddiges garden 1279 varieties of roses !!! Proof of capability of variation!!!'. The nursery rose to great prominence during the early nineteenth century under George Loddiges (1786-1846) who publicised his collection of plants in his 'Botanical Cabinet'. The engravings are by George Cooke after drawings by George Loddiges, his daughter Jane and the young Edward Cooke, who became a leading Victorian artist. Abroad the nursery's influence spread to the imperial garden at St. Petersburg in Russia and the first Botanical Gardens at Adelaide in South Australia in 1839. Directed by John Bailey, who had started with Conrad Loddiges in 1815. It was natural, therefore, that a member of such a firm should be chosen by the Govenor of South Australia (Colonel Gawler) as Government Botanist and curator of the Botanical Gardens at Adelaide. "The Hackney Nursery of Conrad Loddiges & Sons was one of London's marvels from 1810s to 1840s. From 1817 the firm's monthly, 'The Botanical Cabinet' formed a veritable illustrated catalogue of novelties and old favourites such as Acacia melanoxylon, Crowea saligna, Templetonia retusa, Isotoma axillaris, and Lambertia formosa" (Capturing Flora, 300 years of Australian botanical art p. 110 & showing these Australian plants on pages 110 and 111). A very few text leaves with small dots of white chalk. Nissen BBI, 2228; Great Flower Books, p. 85
Item nr. 9995
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