PALLAS, Peter Simon (1741-1811). Flora Rossica seu stirpium Imperii Rossici per Europam et Asiam indigenarum descriptiones et icones. St. Petersburg: e Typographia imperiali J.J.Weitbrecht, 1784-1788.
Volume I, parts 1 and 2 in one volume, 2° (460 x 280mm). Hand-coloured engraved additional title with vignette of Catherine II seated on clouds surrounded by cherubs, 101 fine hand-coloured plates by Karl Friedrich Knappe. (A few captions just shaved, bound without part 2 text pp.1-80.) Contemporary French red straight-grained morocco gilt, g.e., by Bozerian (extremities very slightly rubbed). Provenance: Henry Labouchere (armorial bookplate); ARPAD PLESCH (bookplate, sale Sotheby's 18 November 1975 lot 578 sold £650 to Wheldon & Wesley Ltd).
A FINE COPY OF THE FIRST GREAT ILLUSTRATED RUSSIAN FLORA. A magnificent, but unfinished, work intended to reach between 500 and 600 plates. The costs of publication were to be underwritten by Catherine II, however funds were not forthcoming and the projected later volumes were abandoned. 25 additional plates, without text, were issued in 1831: these are lacking in the present copy. Stafleu & Cowan 7227; Nissen BBI 1482; Great Flower Books p.70; Dunthorne 221; Hunt 672.