Details
Hortus Europae Americanus
Mark Catesby, 1767
CATESBY, Mark (1682-1749). Hortus Europae Americanus: or a Collection of 85 Curious Trees and Shrubs, the Produce of North America. London: J. Millan, 1767.

Fine copy of the first edition, second issue, with cancel title dated 1767. The first issue of this work was brought out in 1763 under the title Hortus Britanno-Americanus: or, A Curious Collection of Trees and Shrubs. The new title was meant to broaden its market to all of Europe and not just Britain. "The little Hortus has always lived in the shadow of the much more spectacular Natural History of Carolina, but it encapsulated Catesby’s knowledge of many new plants" (Oak Spring Sylva, p. 53)—Catesby himself notes in the preface: "By a long acquaintance with the trees and shrubs of America, and a constant attention since for several years to their cultivation here, I have been enabled to make such observations on their constitution, growth and culture, as may render the management of them easy to those who shall be desirous to inrich their country, and give pleasure to themselves, by planting and increasing these beautiful exotics." Catesby was still working on his Hortus not long before he died, but it was not published until fourteen years later. The illustrations and text are closely linked to his Natural History of Carolina, but since the Hortus concentrated on plants, there was room for more detailed directions for cultivation. Creating America 15; Dunthorne 73; Hunt 578 (for 1763 issue); Nissen 338; Oak Spring Sylva 15.

Quarto (372 x 275mm). 17 engraved plates with original hand color containing 62 illustrations of plants (some mild offsetting to text). Deckle edges preserved on engraved sheets. Modern half diced calf to style. Provenance: “A. Knauff” (early ownership inscription to title page, many neat and attractive manuscript captions to illustrations).

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