Sunday, September 25, 2011

Crustacean Atlas

hand-coloured engravings of crabs



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse e



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse a



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse j



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse g



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse b



18th c. hand-coloured engravings of crustacea



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse d



Herbst - 18th c engravings crustacea



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse h



Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse k



hand-coloured engraving of a crab from the 1700s by jfw herbst


Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Herbst (1743-1807) was a German naturalist and entomologist as well as a theologian and chaplain for the Prussian army.

Herbst was best known for helping Carl Jablonsky attempt to survey all known beetles (Order Colyoptera). The effort resulted in the massive, but still incomplete 'Naturgeschichte der in-und Ausländischen Insekten' (1785-1806) (see: i, ii)

The title of present interest - 'Versuch einer Naturgeschichte der Krabben und Krebse' ([An attempt at] The Natural History of Crabs and Lobsters) - was released in instalments between about 1782 and the mid-1790s. There were three volumes of text and an atlas consisting of more than sixty hand-coloured engravings. It appears various editions were issued before 1800, some coloured, some not and some coloured later : all having an impact on the auction price today (ranging from, say, $6K to $18K).

Herbst's crab and lobster book was - as far as I can tell - the first comprehensive work on the crustaceans and definitely included descriptions and illustrations of previously unknown species. It is still regarded as a primary source in the field.

JFW Herbst titles on Amazon

2 comments :

chirine nour said...

here there are always marvellous images to see and an important information to share!!!
thanks a lot!!!!

ethel mertz said...

These are absolutely beautiful!

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