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Coloured Figures of English Fungi or Mushrooms Vols I-III with Supplement by James Sowerby - 1st Edition - 1798 - from E C Books (SKU: 032721)

Coloured Figures of English Fungi or Mushrooms Vols I-III with Supplement

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Coloured Figures of English Fungi or Mushrooms Vols I-III with Supplement

by James Sowerby

  • Used
  • very good
  • hardcover
  • First
Very Good/N
Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers.
Birsay, Orkney
Item Price:
US$34.48 shipping to USA
Standard Delivery: 15 to 30 days

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About This Item

London : Printed by J Davis [Vols I & II] and B Wilks [Vol III] for the Author, 1798 A very good copy of the complete 3 volume 1st edition including later Supplement, with 440 hand coloured plates on 436 leaves. This work was James Sowerby's follow up to his successful English Botany and he both drew, and engraved the plates and oversaw the colouring. He immersed himself in the study of mushrooms over the period of work, which was published between 1798 and 1809, including creating 200 models of larger species, and making his collection of specimens available to public view. In his introduction to the Supplement (which was issued without separate title) he states his concern that the identification of many individual species, with illustrations that focus only on perfect specimens, might confuse the public into eating poisonous fungi. His response was to illustrate a number of specimens rather than the 'perfect one' and to model a number of poisonous species for public inspection. This copy is in a near fine half marbled calf binding with marbled boards; small raised bands with gilt ruling and title and volume labels to spine. The binding looks later than the books. The endpapers are marbled and all have the armorial bookplate with the motto 'Haud Muto Factum' ('nothing happens by being mute), the motto of the Delves Broughton family of Doddington Hall, to the front pastedown endpaper. Each volume has an initial and final blank leaf. A previous owner has lightly annotated plate margins with the name of the mushroom and occasionally added scholarly notes and comparison with other works. Overall the contents are in very clean condition. There is occasional offsetting (no tissue guards) and the odd spot or mark in margins. Contents: Vol I: title; dedication to Joseph Banks and James Edward Smith; Preface 2pp; text to plates I - CXX; plates 1 - 120; Index 2pp. There is slight damage to the leather at the spine joint between the title and volume labels at the front; faint lettering at the top of the initial blank; light rippling to bottom paper margins with slight colour change at some points particularly between plates 26-39. Occasional light spots to margins and some indentations to top margins which looks to be caused by paper clips, perhaps holding the book open for view. Vol II: title 1799; text to plates CXXI - CCXL; plates 121 - 240; Index 2pp. The front endpaper has lost its bottom corner tip and there are faint letters to the top of the initial blank. Text for CXL is misprinted as CLX. There is mark to the verso of plate 126 which has imprinted on the blank margin of 127. Vol III: title 1803 with printer B Wilks; text CCXLI - CD; plates 241 - 400; Index 5pp; Dedication to Hugh Davies; Introduction 2pp; text to CCCCI - CCCCXL (with additional observations on tab 387 fig 0); plates 401-440 on 36 leaves. Plate 268 has a small ring with a dot inside - and the figure 1 next to it - this is apparently a spore. There is a scuff to the top of the fep and the initial blank has a large oval stamp of Hulton Press Library and a small oblong stamp at the top. Some text sections have spotting/brown toning (around 13 spotty pages and 19 toned pages) and there is a stain in the bottom gutter affecting the first 10 text pp. Plate 262 has a light stain. Text page to CCCCVI is brown toned on verso. There are a couple of light ? paint splashes to the bottom margin of plate 428 mirrored on the verso of plate 427. A very beautiful work - please enquire if you would like to see additional images to further assess condition.


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E C Books GB (GB)
Bookseller Inventory #
Coloured Figures of English Fungi or Mushrooms Vols I-III with Supplement
James Sowerby
James Sowerby
Book condition
Used - Very Good
Jacket condition
Quantity available
1st Edition
Printed by J Davis [Vols I & II] and B Wilks [Vol III] for the Author
Place of Publication
Date published
james sowerby; coloured figures of english fungi; eighteenth century fungology; haud muto factum;
Bookseller catalogs
Folio - over 12 - 15" tall

Terms of Sale

E C Books

30 day return guarantee, with full refund including shipping costs for up to 30 days after delivery if an item arrives misdescribed or damaged.

About the Seller

E C Books

Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers. member since: 2011
Birsay, Orkney
Ask Seller a Question

About E C Books

E C Books is a small online bookselling business, specialising in pre 20th century works:natural history, science, history, and travel, aiming for rarer and more unusual books. Our largest stock area is Natural History, where we have a good range of books from the 1700-1800's, many finely illustrated. Other areas include children's books, particularly late 1800's-early 1900's - again illustrated; and literature pre 1900.When you order books from us we ensure that they are properly packed to protect condition, and we always use recorded or 'signed for' postal services for more secure delivery. Please note that we have recently moved to the beautiful Orkney Islands, where we intend to open a bookshop over the next year. Because of our location we cannot guarantee 'next day' delivery but we will get your purchase to you as quickly and safely as we can.Please note that the buyer is responsible for the payment of any tax or duty on import.


Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:

raised band(s)
Raised bands refer to the ridges that protrude slightly from the spine on leather bound books.  The bands are created...[more]
Full page illustration or photograph. Plates are printed separately from the text of the book, and bound in at production. I.e.,...[more]
The decorative application of gold or gold coloring to a portion of a book on the spine, edges of the text block, or an inlay in...[more]
A book in fine condition exhibits no flaws. A fine condition book closely approaches As New condition, but may lack the...[more]
Very generally, "leaves" refers to the pages of a book, as in the common phrase, "loose-leaf pages." A leaf is a single sheet...[more]
The inside margin of a book, connecting the pages to the joints near the binding.
The outer portion of a book which covers the actual binding. The spine usually faces outward when a book is placed on a shelf....[more]
Highly sought after by some collectors, a book plate is an inscribed or decorative device that identifies the owner, or former...[more]
The page bound on the left side of a book, opposite to the recto page.
Calf or calf hide is a common form of leather binding.  Calf binding is naturally a light brown but there are ways to treat...[more]

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