KNIGHT, Thomas Andrew (1759-1838). Pomona Herefordiensis: containing Coloured Engravings of the Old Cider and Perry Fruits of Herefordshire. London: D. Cartwright for the Agricultural Society of Herefordshire, sold by W. Hooker, White and Cochrane, and J. Harding, 1811 [but text and plates watermarked '1819' and '1820' respectively].
4° (295 x 237mm). 30 hand-coloured aquatint plates engraved and coloured by William Hooker, 27 after Elisabeth Matthews and 3 after Frances Knight. (Some light spotting on preliminary text, light offsetting from plates onto text, a few plates trimmed touching platemarks). Contemporary blue, straight-grained morocco gilt [upper and lower endpapers watermarked '1820'], covers with broad borders of gilt and blind foliate rolls, gilt turn-ins, flat spine gilt in compartments and titled in one, gilt edges (extremities lightly rubbed, minor scuffing on covers). Provenance: Robert Hodgson Fowler (armorial bookplate on upper pastedown) -- Francis Peters (loosely-inserted invoice from Lowe Bros, Birmingham dated 28 April 1956).
FIRST EDITION OF KNIGHT'S CELEBRATED POMONA IN A CONTEMPORARY BINDING. Thomas Andrew Knight, brother of Richard Payne Knight and President of the Horticultural Society from 1811 to 1838, devoted most of his life to the study of agriculture and horticulture, improving various kinds of fruit from seed produced by hybridisation and careful selection, instead of the traditional methods of grafting. Pomona Herefordiensis was originally issued in ten parts between 1808 and 1811 by Agricultural Society of Herefordshire (of which Knight was a founder member), and was re-issued in 1820; in addition to the descriptions and illustrations of varieties of fruits, the preface outlines the principles of cider making. The fine colour plates by William Hooker, one of the most highly-regarded pomological engravers, 'show scabby fruit, larvae-ravaged foliage, and Wooly Aphid-clad twigs to a degree not previously dared in an expensive plate work' (Janson p.298). Arnold Arboretum p.392; BM(NH) II, p.997; Cleveland Collection 756 (later issue with text watermarked 1819 and plates watermarked 1820); Dunthorne 168; Great Flower Books p.108; Janson Pomona's Harvest p.373 (later issue); Nissen BBI 1072; Oak Spring Pomona 80; Pritzel 4,746; Stafleu and Cowan 3761 ([?erroneously] calling for index leaf).