RISSO, Joseph Antoine (1777-1845) and Pierre Antoine POITEAU (1766-1854). Histoire naturelle des Orangers. Paris: Imprimerie de Mme. Hérrisant le Doux, 1818-.
4° in 2 (430 x 270mm). Half-title, 2pp. dedication to the Duchesse de Berry, 109 fine stipple-engraved plates printed in colours and finished by hand after Poiteau by V. Bonnefoi, Chailly, Dien, Gabriel, Legrand, T. Susémihl and Texier, plate 15 misnumbered as 21. (Some spotting and occasional light browning to text and plates, some light offsetting onto the plates, plates 3 to 8 short at lower margin, plate 28 and later plates with the sized area browned.) Contemporary olive straight-grained morocco gilt by Charles Lewis, covers with ruled borders and corner rosettes, spine gilt in six sections, gilt inner dentelles, gilt edges.
A RARE LARGE-PAPER COPY OF THE FIRST EDITION, of this 'beautiful and inspiring work' (Great Flower Books), covering over 70 varieties of sweet or bitter oranges, nearly fifty lemons and smaller numbers of limes, citrons, and grapefruit. It was published at a time when Nice was still in the kingdom of the Two Sicilies, appearing in 19 fascicles between July 1818 and August 1820. The author, Antoine Risso, was a French apothecary and botanist who spent all his life in Nice. Antoine Poiteau, the illustrator, began his career as an apprentice gardener at the Jardin des Plantes, and spent some time in the Caribbean collecting plants before returning to Paris in 1800 and turning to botanical illustration, with an initial style modelled on Van Spaendonck and Redouté. Apart from the illustrations, he provided much information on citrus varieties native to the Tropics. The size of this copy is unusual and suggests it may have been for special presentation. The dedicatee of the work was the Duchesse de Berry, daughter of Francis I of Naples, and her crowned coat-of-arms appears on the title-page. Oak Spring Pomona 76; Nissen BBI 1640; Great Flower Books p.73; Dunthorne 263; Stafleu and Cowan 9248.