Lot 11
  • 11

Audubon, John-James

50,000 - 70,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • ink and paper
The Birds of America, from Drawings made in the United States and their Territories. New York and Philadelphia: J. J. Audubon and J. B. Chevalier, [1839–] 1840–1844

7 volumes, 8vo (10 1/4 x 6 7/16 in.; 260 x 163 mm). 500 fine handcolored lithographed plates after Audubon by W. E. Hitchcock, R. Trembly, and others, printed and colored by J.T. Bowen, numerous wood-engraved anatomical figures in text, cumulative lists of subscribers in each volume, half-title (numbered vol. 1) in vol. 1, general half-title, duplicate title-page and list of contents for vol. 7 bound at the end of vol. 7; [vol. 1]: light text offsetting to approximately 25 plates, pl. 49 bound upside down; [vol. 2]: light text offsetting to approximately 35 plates, light toning to about 3 plates; [vol. 3]: light text offsetting to about a dozen plates, marginal toning on 2 plates; [vol. 4]: light text offsetting to approximately 22 plates; [vol. 5]: title-page foxed, light scattered foxing on a few text leaves, marginal stain on p. 201; [vol. 6]:  minor foxing on title-page, light marginal spotting on pl. 366 not affecting image, tissue guard for pl. 374 torn; minor tissue paper adhesion to pl. 378 in upper right margin; [vol. 7]: title-page browned (duplicate title-page bound at the end is pristine), light text offsetting to about 10 plates, pl. 451 spotted, pl. 469-470 offset to text, pl. 486 printed on another paper stock and marginally soiled, a few text leaves browned.  Full red morocco paneled gilt, oval cartouche composed of a fine fillet surround by entwined floral and foliate tools containing the gilt emblem of the Washington Sea Eagle, dentelles richly gilt, yellow-coated endpapers, spines in 6 compartments gilt with raised bands (2 compartments reserved for lettering and numbering), edges gilt; joints of vols. 1-2 very slightly rubbed.


Caroline M. Fitch (19th c. signature on front free endpaper in each volume, name not found in lists of subscribers)


Ayer/Zimmer 22; Freid Appendix A; McGill/Wood 208; Nissen, IVB 51; Reese, American Color Plate Books 34; Sabin 2364

Catalogue Note

First octavo edition, bound in a spectacular deluxe morocco binding featuring the Washington Sea Eagle (plate 13) on all covers. This is also the first complete edition of this monumental work. The double-elephant folio contained 435 plates, whereas this edition expanded the number to 500, making it the first time that the complete series was printed and offered to the public.