Histoire Naturelle des Orangers
By Risso, Antoine and Poiteau, Antoine
Pp. (iv), 280, with 109 fine stipple-engraved plates printed in colors and finished by hand, with occasional touches of gum arabic, after Poiteau, by V. Bonnefoi, Chailly, Dien, Gabriel, Legrand, T. Susémihl and Texier. Contemporary light brown calf, neatly rebacked with spine laid on, the covers with a wide decorative border elaborately tooled in gilt and blind, the spine in six compartments with raised bands, black morocco lettering-piece in the second compartment, the others with repeat overall tooling, gilt turn-ins, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt, folio (338 x 252 mm). The title displays the wood-engraved arms of the Duchesse de Berry; there is a two page dedication to the Duchesse de Berry in the frontis matter. A very important monograph on citrus fruit; the work depicts an amazing variety of oranges, limes, lemons and the precursor of the grapefruit – many images show the complete fruit as well as the cross-section. It was this work that Sacheverell Sitwell, writing in Great Flower Books (1990), rates as highly as anything by Redouté, Prévost or van Spaëndonck. He describes Risso and Poiteau's work in glowing terms as "a Hesperidean holiday among orange and citrus groves, for it contains exquisite drawings of every known variety of orange, lemon, and grape fruit … fruits that hang from the leaves … like suns and moons, with every kind of rind, and shaped like gourds or pitchers … or again, authentic globes of fire, whether pale, as of moonlight, or red-gold like the sun but half-hidden, as in poetry, in its own green shade. A beautiful and inspiring work…" (p. 22-23). For further information, see Nissen BBI 1640; Oak Spring Pomona 76 and Stafleu and Cowan 9248.
|Publisher||Imprimerie de Mme. Hérissant le Doux, Imprimeur ordinaire du Roi|
|Date Published||1818 [-1820]|
|Date Published Estimated||No|
|Number of Volumes|
|Condition Description||Some occasional light marginal foxing to parts of text, verso of some plates are lightly browned, heavier browning or spotting to six plates only, calf binding with slight edge wear and a few old mars, a tight, clean copy in very good condition in an attractive period binding.|