An Account of Indian Serpents collected on the Coast of Coromandel (volume 1) + A Continuation of an Account of Indian Serpents (volume 2), together in one large volume, complete
By Russell, Patrick
Pp. (Vol. 1): portrait of Russell, i (title page) - viiii, ix - xv (Memoir of Patrick Russell), (1) - 91 pages + plates I - (XLVI) (46 plates on 45 leaves, with plates 42 and 43 together on a single leaf (all plates are hand-colored, except for 39, 45 and 46 which are un-colored anatomical diagrams; Pp. (Vol. 2): (i, title page) - v (The Editor’s Preface), (1) - 53 pages + (1-4, index) + plates I-XLII hand-colored plates + 3 un-colored anatomical plates) (45 plates on 42 leaves). Contemporary full black morocco leather, spine with seven raised bands, each band as five panel lines, title/author lettered in gilt in one compartment and publication date appears at spine base, front and rear covers tooled in gilt along the outer borders, all outer board edges tooled in multiple gilt lines as are the morocco turn-ins that border the endpapers, original marbled endpapers, all page edges in gilt, elephant folio (54 cm height, 37 cm width). The fine binding is by Dulau and Co, Soho Square, London (binder’s sticker). Russell was a physician by profession and the first to study snakes systemically. He was born in 1727 in Edinburgh, Scotland where he later attended university. He accompanied his brother, an officer in the East Indian Company, to the Coromandel Coast of India north of Madras in 1782. He was later appointed the company naturalist and wrote numerous papers and a guide to the poisonous snakes of India. In 1789, Russell returned to England to continued writing books. Russell’s most important book “An Account of Indian Serpents” is one of the classics of herpetology and may be the most physically imposing book ever written on herpetology (54 cm in height weighing 8 kg). The magnificent hand-colored plates are equally remarkable as they depict the snakes as life-size. There are a total of 95 plates (88 are hand-colored) in this work including a portrait of Russell. Armorial bookplate on the front endpaper. Small hand stamp of C. Anthony at the top of each title page.
|Publisher||published by George Nicol + published by G. and W. Nicol|
|Date Published||1796 + 1801-1810|
|Date Published Estimated||No|
|Number of Volumes||1|
|Condition Description||There is mild offsetting of the frontis-portrait of Russell onto title page of volume 1, a few page margins show minor finger-print smudges, the fine hand-colored plates are all bright and clean with no foxing, the original binding shows slight edge wear; a very bright and clean copy in near fine condition.|