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This color chromolithograph is from the first and only edition of Jean Baptiste Verany’s Mollusques Mediterraneens observes, decrits, figures et chromolitographies d’apres le vivant, ouvrage dedie a.s. m. le Roi Charles Albert. Premiere partie: Cephalopodes de la Mediterranee. The work was published in Gènes (Genoa) by/i Imprimerie des Sourds-Muets in 1851. This work is exceedingly rare and features the “first drawing of a deep sea luminous squid” (Newton Harvey, A history of luminescence).
Verany was one of the founders of the Nice Natural History Museum. “Jean-Baptiste Verany, a famous naturalist of the beginning of the 19th century, has distinguished himself by his work on octopus, squids, cuttlefishes and argonauts (cephalopod molluscs) which he discovered, described and wonderfully drew from specimens fished in the Mediterranean sea.” (From the exhibtion announcement of the Nice Natural History Museum, 2001)