Monday, October 17, 2005

Gesner's Sea Creature

Historiæ Animalium by Conrad Gesner (published c. 1558 but this edition is likely from the end of that century) - the sea creatures volume - all 416 pages at Keio University Japan (illustrations virtually every page).

This relates to an entry from last week about Edward Topsell.

Again, I've selected all the strangest beasties to me. This mammoth work actually has illustrated specimens of everything from sharks to seahorses and crabs to squid.

Conrad Gesner wikipedia.
Addit: I had been thinking that I had already posted these, or some of these. It happens often actually - after seeing images many times between finding them and editing and whatnot, after a while the newness or novelty wears off and they become familiar. There's also the repetition of some in the Topsell material. Well it turns out this time I was right and wrong. I haven't, I don't think, posted any of them directly, but some of these Gesner images bear a remarkable similarity to Magna Olaus's Carta Marina beasties. Hmm..

UPDATE: 'Fischbuch/ Das ist/ Außführliche beschreibung/ vnd lebendige Conterfactur aller vnnd jeden Fischen/ von dem kleinsten Fischlein an biß auff den größten Wallfisch/ wie sie nicht allein in dem grossen hohen Meer/ sondern auch in den Seen/ Flüssen/ Bächen/ vnd allen Schiffreichen Wassern gesehen vnd gefangen werden' at Göttinger Digitalisierungszentrum.

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