PETERS, Wilhelm Carl Hartwig (1815-1883). Naturwissenschaftliche Reise nach Mossambique ... in den Jahren 1842 bis 1848 ausgeführt. Berlin: Georg Reimer, 1852-1882.
6 parts bound in 8 volumes, 4° and 2°. 210 plates (141 lithographic, 68 of these hand-coloured; 69 engraved, 10 hand-coloured). Various bindings, all within six uniform modern green cloth solander boxes, green-morocco lettering-piece to spine.
A VERY RARE COMPLETE SET OF THIS PIONEERING AND IMPORTANT SERIES ON THE NATURAL HISTORY OF MOZAMBIQUE, including the plates from the unpublished section on birds. This work was one of the few transitional large-scale natural history works which combined a text which demonstrated a very modern approach to the search for the highest levels of scientific accuracy, with plates that have a beauty not found with later automated printing methods. The bird plates seem to be particularly rare: neither Nissen nor Stafleu & Cowan mention them, merely noting that Part 2 was not published. Wilhelm Peters was a student and successor to Johannes Müller as professor of Zoology and director of the Zoological Museums at the Royal University of Berlin. Early in his career, from 1842 to 1848, he spent a number of years "in the field" travelling in South Africa, India and of course East Africa and Mozambique and from 1852 to 1882 wrote or edited this important in-depth study of the whole range of flora and fauna of the country. He was helped in the preparation of the work by an accomplished group of natural historians including Garcke, Jlotzch and Steetz.
The set comprises:
1. [Mammals] - ... Zoologie. I. Sägethiere. Berlin: 1852. 2° (463 x 330 mm). Half-title. 46 plates by or after J.D.L. Franz Wagner, Hugo Troschel, A. Andorff, C. Haas and others (14 engravings, 10 hand-coloured, 32 lithographs, 25 hand-coloured). Early cloth-backed boards, paper label on spine, modern cloth box.
2. [Birds] - [Zoologie. II. Vogel] 15 hand-coloured lithographic plates by J.D.L. Franz Wagner, sheet size approx. 503 x 336 mm. Unbound as issued (?) within later cloth-backed portfolio, modern cloth box. These plates were all that were published of this part: no text was printed.
3. [Amphibians] - ...Zoologie. III. Amphibien. Berlin: 1882. 2° (495 x 33 mm). Half-title. 33 lithographic plates by Wager, W.A. Meyn, Euen Duval and others? 28 hand-coloured. Original half cloth, paper label on spine, modern cloth box.
4. [River Fish] - ... Zoologie. V. Insecten und Myriapoden. Bearbeitet un verbindung, mit Klug, Loew, Schaum, Hagen, gerstaecker, Hopffer. Berlin: 1868. 2 volumes (including portfolio of plates), 4° (317 x 241 mm). 20 engraved plates by A. Andorff, Wagenscheiber or C. Haas, sheet size: 13½ x 10 inches. Text: later cloth-backed boards, paper label on spine, plates: unbound in later cloth-backed portfolio, all within a single modern cloth box.
5. [Insects] - ...Zoologie. V. Insecten und Myriapoden. Bearbeitet un verbindung, mit Klug, Loew, Schaum, Hagen, Gerstaecker, Hopffer. Berlin: 1862. 4° (336 x 247 mm). Half-title. 34 engraved plates by Wagenscheiber and Wienker. Original cloth-backed boards, paper label to spine, modern cloth box.
6. [Botany] - ...Botanik. Bearbeitet von Andersson, Bökeler, Bolle, Braun, Garcke, Hasskarl, Klatt, Klotsch, Kunth, Müller, Reichenbach, Steet. Berlin: 1862-1864. 2 volumes, 4° (349 x 241 mm). Half-titles. 61 lithographic plates by J.D.L. Franz Wagner. Modern cloth-backed boards, paper label to spine, all within a single modern cloth box.
K.Adler, Contributions to the History of Herpetology (1989) p.37; BM (NH) IV, p.1555; Embacher 229; Horn/Schenkling 17099; Nissen ZBI 3139; Stafleu and Cowan 7759. (8)