MARSIGLI, Count LUIGI FERDINANDO. Danubis pannonico-mysticus observationibus geographicis, astronomicis, hydrographicis, historicis, physicus perlustratus. The Hague and Amsterdam: 1726.
6 volumes in three, folio, 567 x 405mm., near-contemporary English diced russia gilt, covers with decorative border, spine in nine compartments with raised bands, lettered in the second and third, the second stained black, the others with repeat pattern composed from various small tools, joints a trifle weak with occasional small cracks, small chips to head and foot of spines, some discoloration of leather, occasional light soiling, final five plates and accompanying text in vol.IV with worm track at inner blank margin.
FIRST EDITION. Titles in red and black with engraved vignettes, engraved frontispieces, head- and tailpieces, illustrations and 275 plates, plans and maps (4 folding, 33 double-page), 2 double-page letterpress tables, numerous engraved initials throughout.
A good copy of a remarkably inclusive work, and "An early classic on the natural history of the River Danube with an account of the animals living in it and about its course; a description of the fishes, the birds and their nests, the quadrupeds roaming the banks, etc." (Wood). Some of the bird plates are particularly fine and appear to have been drawn from life. Count Marsigli (1658-1730) was something of a polymath: naturalist, geographer, soldier, founder of the Institute of Science and Arts in Bologna and pioneer oceanographer. His writings were equally wide-ranging, from the reproduction of fungi to the military readiness of the Ottoman empire.
Wood 452; Nissen ZBI 2697.
Provenance: Viscount Rolle, armorial bookplate. (3)