antique prints, maps and watercolors

Plate 467. (Phaleris) The Birds of America. Philadelphia: (1856) $125.00

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Plate 467. "Curled-crested Phaleris"

John James Audubon is renowned for his elephant folio work entitled Birds of America depicting all North American birds then known. The great size and complicated printing methods used to create the engravings in this work meant that they were costly even at the time of publication and a very limited number were produced. In 1840 in response to popular demand, Audubon issued a smaller format edition of  the work known as “the royal octavo edition.” It contains the only other original antique prints based upon his watercolors, the so-called  “royal octavo edition.”  In the same way that Audubon carefully selected the engravers and colorists of his elephant folio, he carefully selected the best lithographers and colorists for this smaller version. He selected J.T. Bowen of Philadelphia.  At the time of its publication a complete set of the royal octavo edition could be purchased for $100. Current prices range from $30,000 to $125,000  based upon edition, condition and venue.

Hand colored lithograph.
Approx. 10 1/2 x 6 3/4 inches sheet.
Excellent condition.