22 June 2010
THE PROPERTY OF A GENTLEMAN
HUMBOLDT, Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Alexander, Baron von (1769-1859) and Aimé Jacques Alexandre BONPLAND (1773-1858). Atlas Pittoresque. Vues des Cordillères, et monumens des peuples de l'Amérique. Paris: F.Schoell, 1810.
Large 2o (564 x 410 mm). Half-titles to general and section title, engraved dedication and 69 engraved plates (on 68 sheets, nos. 8 and 9 on one sheet, including 25 hand-colored and one hand-colored double-page view of Chimborazo) mostly engraved by Bouquet in Paris or by Arnold in Berlin after sketches by Humboldt and drawings by Aguera, Koch, Marchais and others. (Some dampstaining and spotting.) 19th-century calf (rebacked, corners repaired, hinges cracked and loose in binding, book block reinforced). Provenance: Earl of Ilchester, Holland House (bookplate).
FIRST EDITION of the "most beautiful and generally interesting of Humboldt's works" (Sabin). The superb colored aquatints include the double-page plate of the great volcano of Chimborazo in the Andean highlands. Most of the illustrations were made after Humboldt's original sketches, who was closely involved in the publication, especially in checking the coloring of the illustrations. This Atlas Pittoresque is one of the most important publications resulting from Humboldt's and Bonpland's journey through Central and South America (1799-1804). It is part of Humboldt's and Bonpland's monumental 30 volume work about his journey of the American continent. This exploration opened up the South American continent to the scientific explorers of the 19th century. Brunet III:373; Lipperheide Md6; Sabin 33754.
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