Besleriana -- Johannes Heinrich Lochner.
Rariora Musei Besleriani quae olim Basilius et Michael Rupertus Besleri collegerunt. [Nuremberg:] 1716. 2° (306 x 190mm). Title printed in red and black. Folding portrait engraving of the author by G.D. Heumann, and 40 double-page engravings of natural history specimens, one wood-engraved headpiece and initial, woodcut headpiece and initial. (Lightly browned, one clean tear at plate fold.) Contemporary German blindtooled pigskin over wooden boards, missing two fore-edge clasps. Provenance: Gamming, Carthusians (title inscription dated 1717, ?armorial on front cover) -- J.B. Holzinger (19th-century bookplate) -- Kenneth K. Mackenzie (bequeathed to:) -- Horticultural Society of New York (bookplate).
FIRST EDITION. The work documents and illustrates specimens from the natural history cabinet of Basilius Besler, his brother Hieronymous, and his nephew Michael Rupert Besler. Theirs was one of the first private museums in Germany. While Basilius published illustrations of his cabinet in 1616 and 1622, the earliest images of his specimens may be found in an engraving prepared for the great florilegium, the Hortus Eystettensis (see lots 3-5), where the engraved seasonal title depicts apothecary jars, stuffed animals, etc. For his history of the collection Lochner re-uses 24 plates from the 1616 suite, a few from the 1622 suite, and a few from Michael Rupert's own description of the collection, the Gazophylacium, published in 1642 (see previous lot). Further plates were added depicting new specimens. Among the many objects illustrated are exotic seed pods, an armadillo, an iguana, birds-of-paradise, fossils, coral, star fish and minerals. McGill/Wood 439; Nissen ZBI 348 (calling mistakenly for 2 portraits).