Reduced from $225.
From a French or perhaps Belgian horticultural publication, these three finely detailed and richly hand-colored plates feature the "Aconit Tue-Loup (Aconitum lycoctonum L), the "Garance" (Rubia tinctorum L) and the "Argemone du Mexique (Argemone Mexicana L), better known as the Mexican Prickly Poppy. The first two are embellished with wonderful technical minutiae such as seeds and seedpods - in line with the true scientific purpose served by botanical illustration in this era. When improved transportation made it possible for botanists and artists to travel the world together, as our example from Mexico demonstrates, a great age of exploration began.
My passion for this art form is relatively recent, so please tell me, if you recognize the artist's style and/or know in which book or periodical in which works appeared. I've searched the Web for hours in vain, and no clue I can interpret remains on the prints, themselves - which were dated to 1848 in Europe, presumably by the person who removed them from the publication in question. That didn't happen long ago. From their very strong colors, you can see these never were displayed before. Overall condition is absolutely glorious; there's even practically no foxing. They're on that beautiful heavy French paper, with no printing on reverse. On the fronts, besides plant identification, plate numbers appear plus these inscrutable (to me) legends: FL. MED T.I. on the poppy and FL. AGR. & FOR. on the other two.
Prettily double-matted to a size of 10 1/2" to 13 1/2", this great set comes from a French supplier to the English antiques trade. We found them at a shop in Lincolnshire.
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