WILSON, ALEXANDER.  American Ornithology.  Phila: 1808-1814.  9 vols.  mixed bindings.
Lot 5169
WILSON, ALEXANDER. 1766-1813. American Ornithology; or, The Natural History of the Birds of the United States. Philadelphia: Bradford and Inskeep, 1808-14.
Sold for US$ 17,500 inc. premium
Lot Details
WILSON, ALEXANDER. 1766-1813.
American Ornithology; or, The Natural History of the Birds of the United States. Philadelphia: Bradford and Inskeep, 1808-14. 9 volumes. Folio (343 x 257 mm). List of subscribers, wanting half-titles. 76 hand-colored engravings by Alexander Lawson, G. Murray, Benjamin Tanner and J. G. Warnicke, from original drawings by Wilson, multiple figures on plates. A few plates spotted, offsetting throughout, browning to textual leaves, some dampstaining to final textual leaves vol 2.
[WITH]
BONAPARTE, CHARLES LUCIAN. ...The Natural History of Birds ... Not Given by Wilson. Philadelphia: Samuel Augustus Mitchell (vol 1), and Carey, Lea & Carey (vols 2-4), 1825-33. 27 hand-colored engravings. Plates of vols 2-4 browned, text leaves of vols 2 & 4 spotted, repair to margins verso of plate 21.
Together, 13 volumes. Period quarter morocco and marbled boards (sympathetic but not uniform), gilt spines. Bindings a bit worn, a few hinges tightened on Wilson, chipping to spine of volume 4 of Bonaparte.

FIRST EDITION OF THE FIRST COLOR-PLATE AMERICAN BIRD BOOK PUBLISHED IN AMERICA, and of its four-volume continuation. Wilson, the father of American ornithology, produced his seminal study—the result of years of fieldwork—more than a decade before Audubon's appeared. Bonaparte's work was brought out as a supplement to Wilson's, and the works were published together in subsequent editions. Anker 533; Nissen IVB 992; Sabin 104597; Sitwell p 78, 155.
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