WITH 138 HAND-COLORED PLATES OF THE EGGS OF BRITISH BIRDS
HEWITSON, William C. Coloured Illustrations of the Eggs of British Birds, Accompanied with Descriptions of the Eggs, Nests, Etc. London: John Van Voorst, 1846. Two volumes. Octavo, early full polished brown calf, raised bands, black morocco spine labels. $1600.
Second edition, substantially different from the first, with 138 hand-colored plates of the eggs of British birds.
First published in 1831-42 under the title British Oology, "the book consists of an account of the breeding habits of the various species of British birds, with colored plates of their eggs… two later editions were issued under a slightly different title, as 'Coloured Illustrations of the Eggs of British Birds" (Ayers, 302-03). But, as Ayers points out for this edition, "the work is something more than a new edition of the earlier 'British Oology'… since the text is rewritten and enlarged and the plates are different." Although the plate count only reaches number 131, there are 7 plate numbers shared by two separate plates. Nissen, 125.
Plates and text fine, inner hinges expertly reinforced, calf binding handsome.