ENGRAMELLE, Jacques-Louis-Florentin, ERNST, Jean-Jacques
6 vol., large 4to: 2 vol. Atlas: frontisp.-184 pls, frontisp.-166 pls; 4 vol. Text (Atlas vol. I: tear in suppl. pl. 6, blank lower margin pl. 87 torn; Text: spotting, some occ. browning and soiling, a few sm. tears in blank margins vol. I and III).
Green cardboard covers, flat spines with red leather title labels (used and def. spines, spine Atlas vol. I missing). Good copy with very clean plates.
First edition of one of the most beautiful books on butterflies ever published. Limited to 250 copies by subscription, and published in 29 instalments in 8 "tomes", here bound in 4 vols Text and 2 vols Atlas. Beautifully illustrated with 3 nice engr. frontisp. (2 hand-coloured in Atlas vols, 1 in Text vol. II), 3 uncoloured engr. full-page pls in text vol. I showing the devices needed for chasing butterflies, and 350 finely etched and hand-coloured full-page plates showing more than 3000 species of butterflies, with their respective caterpillar and chrysalis. The pls are signed Ernst, Zelle, Kraul, Fossier, Dovillers, Hochecker, Engramelle, and are engraved by Juillet, Ransonnette, Roger and Swebach Desfontaines. The plates are numbered 1 to 342, with 8 suppl. pls bound between pls 84 & 85. It was the wealthy collector and Financial Officer Jean Gigot d'Orcy (1733-1793) who commanded the Augustine monk and entomologist J.L.F. Engramelle (1734-1814) to make a detailed description of his large butterfly collection, and, with the help of the naturalist illustrator and painter J.J. Ernst, produce a grand publication based on that collection; the entire publication took more than 12 years. Each of the 8 text "tomes" with its own title page (except t. VI). Woodcut head and end pieces. Ref. Nissen (ZBI) 1300. - Brunet II:1048-1049. - Bn-Opale plus. Prov. Bookseller's ticket on flyleaf Text vol. I.
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