Isabella Sinclair (1842-1900)
Indigenous Flowers of the Hawaiian Islands. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle, and Rivington, 1885. 2 (368 x 274mm). 44 chomolithographic plates printed on prepared paper by Leighton Brothers after Isabella Sinclair. Original green cloth, the upper cover and spine blocked in gilt, g.e. (light scuffing).
A fine copy of the first edition. The author, a British-born botanist, moved to New Zealand in 1862, living initially in Christchurch and then Blenheim. In 1866 she married Francis Sinclair and they moved to the island of Niihau in the Hawaiian archipelago. The present collection of prints of indigenous flowers was made from specimens collected on Niihau and Kauai and in the introduction the author expresses the very modern fear that her watercolours may prove to be valuable as a record of species that were about to be overwhelmed by recent plant arrivals and the depradations of the domestic animals introduced by man. The Hawaiian names proved surprisingly difficult to establish, the scientific names were provided by Sir Joseph Hooker. Nissen BBI 1848; Stafleu & Cowan 12.024.