This strong sea life engraving is from Francis Willughby’s De historia Piscium libri quatuor, jussu & sumptibus Societatis Regiae Londinensis editi … which was completed post-humously by John Ray. This first edition work was published in London in 1686.
This work was the first large work on fishes published in England and marked a new era in ichthyology. The plates for the work were engraved by Paul van Somers, which was supervised by Martin Lister.
Willughby was a naturalist and one of the original members of the Royal Society. At Trinity College, Willughby befriended his tutor John Ray and financed travel through Europe to research and collect material for their scientific works.
Provenance: Armorial bookplate of Falkenhof