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SHARPE, Richard Bowdler (1847-1909). Monograph of the Paradiseidae, or Birds of Paradise, and Ptilonorhynchidae, or Bower-Birds. London: Henry Sotheran & Co. [printed by Taylor and Francis], 1891-1898.
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SHARPE, Richard Bowdler (1847-1909). Monograph of the Paradiseidae, or Birds of Paradise, and Ptilonorhynchidae, or Bower-Birds. London: Henry Sotheran & Co. [printed by Taylor and Francis], 1891-1898.

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SHARPE, Richard Bowdler (1847-1909). Monograph of the Paradiseidae, or Birds of Paradise, and Ptilonorhynchidae, or Bower-Birds. London: Henry Sotheran & Co. [printed by Taylor and Francis], 1891-1898.

2 volumes, 2° (553 x 375mm). 79 lithographic plates, the majority by and after W. Hart or by Hart after J. Gould, a smaller number by Hart after J. G. Keulemans or by and after Keulemans, printed by Mintern Brothers, all with fine later hand-colouring. Woodcuts and half tone illustrations in text. Late 19th-century gilt-panelled green morocco, yellow endpapers, gilt edges (rebacked, scuff marks to lower cover of vol. I and upper cover of vol. II).

The striking life-size plates led Sitwell to call Sharpe's monograph 'the last of the fine bird books.' A magnificent work, it can be regarded as both a continuation and consolidation of Gould's The Birds of New Guinea (1875-88) which Sharpe himself had completed after Gould's death. Athough Sharpe's chief aim was to figure and describe newly-discovered species, only some plates are entirely new; others are printed from the stones used by Gould and Sharpe in the earlier work, and some are redrawn. Fine Bird Books p. 107; Nissen IVB 865; Zimmer p. 581. (2)
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