(London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1865). 176 x 113 mm. (7 x 4 1/2"). xiii, , 446 pp. A New Edition.
VERY FINE AND QUITE CHARMING CONTEMPORARY EMERALD GREEN CRUSHED MOROCCO, GILT, IN AN AVIAN MOTIF, covers with dentelle frame featuring a repeating ornament of a bird nestled within a heart shape, thistle and fleurons, and multiple small tools, raised bands, spine densely gilt in compartments with centerpiece tool of a bird lighting on a flowering branch, surrounded by foliage and small tools, gilt lettering, turn-ins with cresting and garland rolls, all edges gilt. With wood-engraved frontispiece of bird-catchers capturing sea birds from perilously high cliffs, title page vignette, and numerous wood engravings of birds in the text. Front pastedown with owner's inscription of Constance Grove White. ◆Spine slightly sunned (though difficult to tell because of all the gilt decoration), endleaves a little spotted, but a beautiful copy, the especially fine binding with few signs of wear and glittering with gilt.
First printed in 1836, this is a liberally illustrated layman's introduction to the various orders of birds, offered here in a delightfully on-theme and handsomely gilt binding. Author Edward Stanley, Bishop of Norwich, (1779-1849), states in his opening paragraph that he is avoiding most "scientific details" that would be "unacceptable, if not unintelligible" to the average reader, in favor of encouraging the public to take an interest in "this beautiful portion of God's creation" that is able "in so many instances, to surpass the highest efforts of man's ingenuity, foresight, or philosophy." The unsigned binding is clearly the work of an accomplished gilder, and it gives the feel of someone as talented as John Wright. The delicate tooling on the covers and spine is elegant and precise, and the inclusion of bird tools a lovely touch. (ST19085)