GOULD, John (1804-1881). The Birds of Great Britain. London: the author, 1 August 1862-1 December 1873.
25 original parts, 2° (562 x 380mm). 367 hand-coloured lithographic plates, most heightened with gum-arabic, by Gould, Henry Constantine Richter, Joseph Wolf and William Hart, most lithographed by Richter and Hart, printed by Walter or Walter and Cohn. 2 wood-engraved illustrations. (Spotting to the last plate in pt. 6 and first plate in pt. 13, first plate in pt. 25 slightly spotted and soiled, very occasional isolated spots to other plates, occasional light offsetting or spotting of text.) Original cloth-backed green printed boards with vignette (light dust-soiling, some light spotting, ink splash on front cover of pt. 2, a few spines torn at head, corners bumped, some hinges split slightly). Provenance: William Peters FRAS, FRGS of Ashfold, Crawley, Sussex (subscriber, with his receipt for parts 9 to 16 in the sum of £25-4-0 dated London, 31 December 1869 and signed by Gould as received 1 March 1870) -- Robert Calvert (bookplate).
AN EXTREMELY FINE UNCUT COPY IN ORIGINAL PARTS. The series begins with the magnificent 'Falco Peregrinus' and spans a publishng period of twelve years before ending with the extinct 'Alca Impennis' or Great Auk and a further 8 plates of young birds to be inserted in volumes II and III. The text is longer than any other in Gould's books, and the illustrations include many more depictions of chicks, nests and eggs. Wolf, who drew 57 of the plates, had accompanied Gould on an ornithological tour of Scandinavia in 1856, and was responsible for persuading Gould and Richter to adopt a livelier treatment of the birds. The parts, priced at three guineas each, each contained 15 plates, except for part 24 containing 14 plates, and part 25 with the final 8. The larger final part also contained the volume titles, dedication, list of subscribers, preface, introduction, list of plates, and binder's slip. As the work was so clearly intended for binding in five volumes, copies in original parts, each with the same vignette of a family of grouse, are inevitably rare, and in our copy the plates remain in a bright, fresh, and of course uncut state. The preservation of one of Gould's receipts with the parts means that the original subscriber can be identified as William Peters, who is listed in Gould's Prospectus of Mr. Gould's Works on Ornithology, etc. With a list of the subscribers and possessors [London: ?1870] as a subscriber to this work and a subscriber to (or owner of) Gould's A Monograph of the Trochilidae (London: 1861). Zimmer p.261; Fine Bird Books p.78; Wood p.365; Nissen IVB 372; Sauer 23. (25)