Product No. kiener292

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Species général et iconographie des coquilles vivantes

This is a rare, first edition engraving from Louis-Charles Kiener’s Species général et iconographie des coquilles vivantes. The work was published in Paris between 1834 and 1850 by Rousseau, Bailliere, s.d. This was at the time that lithography was becoming the popular mode of publication, but Kiener chose to use stipple engraving with original hand-coloring for each plate in the work. It was an expansive work on conchology that classified the shells according to the systems of Cuvier and Lamarck.

Kiener used the famous Delessert collection and the Natural History Museum of Paris to illustrate his work. Together these collections were the most varied fund of conchological matieral available. “He soon put it to good use; and in 1834 he published the first part of his Spécies. This exquisitely illustrated iconography, started before the Sowerbys and Reeve began to issue theirs, appeared at intervals up to 1879, when eleven volumes had been completed. All devoted to the illustration of marine gastopods with the exception of the tenth volume, which includes a monograph on the bivalve genus Thracia. The eleventh volume is the work of Paul Fischer. All the illustrations are by celebrated French engravers and artists of the day.” (Dance. Hist. of Shell Collecting p. 137)

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