8 December 2015
BIGELOW, Jacob (1787-1879). American Medical Botany, being a collection of the native medicinal plants of the United States, containing their botanical history and chemical analysis, and properties and uses in medicine, diet and the arts, with colored engravings. Boston: Cummings and Hilliard, 1817-1821.
3 volumes in 6 original parts, 4° (270 x 187 mm). 60 plates (10 hand-colored copperplate engravings the remainder color-printed). (Occasional spotting and minor browning). Original green printed boards, uncut (some covers detached, spines worn and cracked, some with chipping); two cloth folding cases.
FIRST EDITION, FIRST STATE, OF THE FIRST BOOK PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES WITH PLATES PRINTED IN COLOR. Bigelow, professor of materia medica at Harvard, was one of America's greatest botanists. This work was to have been illustrated with hand-colored copperplates, but as the first illustrations for Volume I, Part I were prepared, this method proved too slow and expensive. Bigelow turned to an alternative method, believed to be the use of etched stone, a technique recently developed in Europe, but barely known in America at the time. Austin 205; Bennett, p.11; Cleveland Collections 804; Cushing B384; Garrison-Morton 1842; Heirs of Hippocrates 1444; Nissen BBI 164; Norman 234; Pritzel 733; Reese 10; Sabin 5294; Stafleu & Cowan TL2 514.
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