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DANIELL, Samuel (1775-1811)
DANIELL, Samuel (1775-1811)
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DANIELL, Samuel (1775-1811)

A Picturesque Illustration of the scenery, animals, and native inhabitants, of the Island of Ceylon: in twelve plates, engraved after the drawings (from nature) of Samuel Daniell. London: printed by T. Bensley, January 1808 [plates dated March-December 1807].

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DANIELL, Samuel (1775-1811)
A Picturesque Illustration of the scenery, animals, and native inhabitants, of the Island of Ceylon: in twelve plates, engraved after the drawings (from nature) of Samuel Daniell. London: printed by T. Bensley, January 1808 [plates dated March-December 1807].
A complete copy of one of Samuel Daniell's major works, recording his travels in Sri Lanka. Samuel Daniell, the younger brother of William and nephew of Thomas Daniell, left England for the Cape of Good Hope where he lived and worked between 1799 and 1805 (his stay here resulted in two published works: African Scenery and Animals [1804-5] and Sketches representing the Native Tribes, 1820). In 1805 Samuel continued his travels, arriving in Galle in Ceylon in August of the same year. As a protégé of the new governor Sir Thomas Maitland, he was appointed Secretary to the Board of Revenue and Commerce, and was later given a special appointment as Ranger of Woods and Forests, allowing him time to travel the length and breadth of the island recording much of what he saw. Ceylon remained his home, until he was struck down by illness and died in 1811 aged 36. Thomas Sutton in his work on the Daniell family describes his work in Southern Africa and Ceylon as being 'of such clarity and outstanding merit that they are sufficient to give a good idea of what Samuel might have achieved had he enjoyed a longer life. In these works he shows full control over his medium; his freshness of approach is apparent; his composition and colour are full of beauty; his animals delicately drawn... As an artist he was certainly the most inspired and original of the three relatives'. William Daniell was probably responsible for all of the engraving in the present work as Samuel was in Ceylon whilst it was being produced. The present copy has text printed on paper with watermark dates conforming to those given in Abbey, but the plates are printed on thick unwatermarked paper. This manifestation of the plates in not mentioned in the bibliographical literature, but copies with plates on thick paper have previously appeared on the market (e.g. Christie's Arts of India Sale 6807, 24 Sept 2003 lot 55). Abbey Travel II, 410; De Silva Early Prints of Ceylon pp.2-23; Nissen ZBI 1036; see Thomas Sutton, The Daniells, Artists and Travellers (London, 1954); Tooley 170.

Large oblong folio (448 x 588mm). Letterpress title (verso blank) and 4 leaves of letterpress text, printed in three columns on recto only, 12 hand-coloured aquatint plates on thick paper after Samuel Daniell by (?)William Daniell (text leaves probably disbound and irregularly cut, with faint central creasefolds with clean and fresh, the paper of the plates evenly browned and slightly brittle, 60mm marginal tear to pl. 1, a couple of other plates with shorter marginal tears and tiny chips, some of which been repaired). Modern cloth portfolio (extremities lightly rubbed).
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