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The Best Pictures

Updated: 2018-03-05T09:21:15.276-08:00


I love


I love the dark more than I love the light, because every dark night has a dawn, and for me, from darkness to light leads to the end. So yes, I am fascinated by the darkness. Everything is dark must have a good side to it is too bright and everything has a dark side to it. It makes me think of all possibilities in a given scenario. It stimulates my imagination and quench my curiosity to look

The Whaling Naturalist


"American whale oil lit the world. It was used in the production of soap, textiles, leather, paints, and varnishes, and it lubricated the tools and machines that drove the Industrial Revolution. The baleen cut from the mouths of whales shaped the course of feminine fashion by putting the hoop in hooped skirts and giving form to stomach-tightening and chest-crushing corsets. Spermaceti, the waxy

The Crimean War


These lithographic scenes from the Crimean War, based on sketches by William Simpson, were published in London in a couple of series by Colnaghi & co. in the second half of the 1850s.The illustrations here are all derived from .tif downloads and the images themselves are cropped back to the edges of the mounted borders. The scene keys or legends were cut from the sides of their corresponding

Kim Kardashian Hot






Love Games


The 17th century engravings below come from a book of love emblems that is variously categorised around the traps as erotic and pornographic - it will help if you are trilingual and have a (very) good imagination. (I've omitted the French poetry pages to tone down the salaciousness)'Le Centre de l'Amour, Decouvert Soubs Divers Emblesmes Galans et Facetieux' (sic) was first published (by Chez

Quotes About Life


Geometric Perspective


The images below (background spot-cleaned) come from a rather obscure 16th century anonymous paper manuscript containing sketches of geometric solids. The illustrations have been cropped from the slightly larger full-page layouts.The album of geometric and perspective drawings (Codex Guelf 74. 1. Aug. fol.) from the 1500s is available online from Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel (

Waterlife and Peacock


The images below come from 'Waterlife' (by Rambharos Jha, 2012) AND'I Saw a Peacock with a Fiery Tail' (illustrated by Ramsingh Urveti, 2012)All illustrations are © Tara Books and the respective authors/illustrators.The images in this post appear with permission.The Octopus at Home (this is a detail; the full image is down below)"Here is the octopus in its habitat, the ocean. I have tried to

Paper Lanterns


'Papierlaternen-Fabrik Riethmüller' [maker's catalog] Anonymous, c. 1880 - happy chromolithographs - from the Metropolitan Museum of Art website. {six prints are it}Previously related? Not really, but still.. Paper Gods + Day of the Dead - Papercuts + Watch-Paper Prints.

Series Imaginum


'Series Imaginum Augustae Domus Boicae, ad Genuina Ectypa Aliaque Monum Fide Digna delin. et Aaeri Incidit, Monachium' 1773 by Joseph Anton Zimmerman, is online at the Bavarian State Library in Munich - 'Miniaturansicht' for thumbnail pages.The book is (fairly obviously) a genealogical portrait record of Bavarian nobility (or royal lineage) from about the 10th century onwards. Bavarian history

Sprague's Natural History


The images below are watercolour sketches by Isaac Sprague from the 1840s.They have all been background spot-cleaned to varying extents.Kingfisher"A single kingfisher is depicted perched on a bare branch"Connecticut Warbler"The single bird is depicted perched on a flowering branch of witch hazel"Chipmunk"The chipmunk is perched on an ear of corn. The date is written in graphite below the

East Asian Designs


I'm afraid I don't recall where these stylised organic line drawings came from. They were scanned a couple of years ago from a library book but I didn't keep the details. Such is life.Previous line drawing designs: Ancient Designs - Mexico + Peru ::: Native North American Designs.At delicious bookmarks: Japan.See you on Twitter.

Map Ornamentation


The images below come from a Harvard Library exhibition from last year called: 'Going for Baroque - The Iconography of the Ornamental Map' [LINK]"The ornamental features that may now seem little more than decorative embellishments once acted as richly nuanced symbols, analogies, and coded commentaries. This exhibit explores how decorative cartographic devices - cartouches, vignettes, figural

Tractatus de Herbis


Codex Sloane 4016 is a 15th century Italian parchment manuscript belonging to a class of books known as herbals. These medicinal treatises recorded knowledge accumulated in the oral tradition about plants believed to possess therapeutic properties. See: one, two, three.Miniature of plants and a demon - the herb Ypericon, supposed to repel demonsMiniature of a plant and boys standing in the

Calligraphy Letterform Album


'Kalligraphische Schriftvorlagen' (calligraphic writing styles) was produced in the 1620s in Germany by the scribe, Johann Hering.Johann Hering (?1580-1647) compiled his album of elaborate calligraphic letterforms, innovative type arrangements and traditional alphabets over a ten year period in the 1620s and 1630s in the Kulmbach region of Bavaria. (Or it was produced sometime during this time

Gods of the Ancients


'Images Depicting the Gods of the Ancients' by Vincenzo Cartari was first published in 1556. The engravings below are from a 1624 edition (in Italian).'Le Imagini De gli Dei de gli Antichi' by Vincenzo Cartari (with illustrations based on designs by Bolognino Zaltieri) was recently made available online via Wolfenbütteler Digitale Bibliothek. [this is the 1664 edition, in the original Italian,

Stripping Turtles


The very rare, 2-volume series, 'Anatome Testudinis Europaeae', by LH Bojanus was published in 1819-1821 (in Latin), and includes 39 stipple engravings by F Lehmann after drawings by the author.[The images below have been cropped and background cleaned]Following completion of his medical training in Germany, Ludwig Heinrich (Louis Henri) Bojanus (1776-1827) somehow obtained a position at the

The Yuko Shimizu Book


All images below © Yuko Shimizu (posted with permission)Blow Up 3 © Yuko Shimizu (2010) [book]DJ Slip Mat (A Nice Set) © Yuko Shimizu (2006) [book]When I Opened My Eyes © Yuko Shimizu (2009) [book]Heinrich Popow^ © Yuko Shimizu (2008) [book]Fear © Yuko Shimizu (2007) [book]The Snow Machine © Yuko Shimizu (2002/3) [book]Now Hear This 2 © Yuko Shimizu (2007) [book]Isis the Cat © Yuko Shimizu (2007)

Beechey's Voyage


'The zoology of Captain Beechey's voyage / compiled from the collections and notes made by Captain Beechey^, the officers and naturalist of the expedition, during a voyage to the Pacific and Behring's Straits performed in His Majesty's ship Blossom, under the command of Captain F. W. Beechey ... in the years 1825, 26, 27 and 28, by J. Richardson ... [et al.] ; illustrated with upwards of fifty

The Rocket Book


"The upward progress of a rocket,lit in the basement by the janitor's son,causes some strange situations as itpasses through 20 floors of apartments!"American artist and author, Peter Newell (1862-1924), established his credentials providing humorous illustrations for famous magazines and newspapers in the last two decades of the 19th century.Newell also illustrated popular books by other authors

Satyr Taxis


Fantasy ornament designs (1550s) by Cornelis Bos- image captions below are translated/edited. A bit.Chariot of grotesques and scrollwork drawn by two fantasy animals and pushed by a satyr, whose head is trapped in a large shell. A satyr is in the car with a lighted lamp. [I]n print series of eight chariots of grotesques and scrollwork with satyrs, animals and various other creatures; decorated

Oscar Sanmartin Vargas


All images below © Oscar Sanmartin{posted here with permission}El Planeta HermeticoEl Hotel MaelstronNadal BaronioEl Efecto Lupa El Niño Gusano 1995FuneralRitual de FecundidadEl Faro de AlesiaComposicion Digital 3Mercado Medievál 2012Leyendario CubiertaPreview of book, 'Leyendario: Criaturas de Agua' 2007{*Legendary Creatures of the Water*}Text: Óscar Sipán :: Illustrations: Oscar Sanmartin[Study

On The Nile


“After getting astride of the saddle, comes motion No. 1, which is caused by the animal raising his hind quarters from the ground; this throws you forward, and you lose both your hat and your balance : then comes motion No. 2, which corresponds to motion No. 1, but with the front quarters; this motion throws the traveller as far backward as he was thrown forward before.These two motions leave the

Liber Floridus


These images come from the fabled manuscript, 'Liber Floridus' (Book of Flowers), a Medieval encyclopædia produced some 900 years ago by Lambert, Canon of St Omer, in the NE France/Flanders/Belgium region."For Lambert the encyclopedia is a heavenly meadow where the “flowers of literature” flourish together to attract faithful readers by their sweetness."{Some of these page and detail images were

Japanese Family Crests


Kamon are Japanese emblems or crests, corresponding to the European heraldy tradition, that are used to specifically represent and identify a family. They are a subset of the larger body of motifs (called mon) that are symbols of temples, clans, guilds and similar groups of people. Mon first appeared by the 12th century as patterns on flags and uniforms in battles, but their wider use followed

A Sometimes Unnatural History


The images below (background cleaned) are taken from the multi-volume natural history work, 'Getreue Abbildungen Naturhistorischer Gegenstände' (1795-1807), by Johann Matthäus Bechstein.GibbonCommon (!?) Marmoset (Simia jacchus Linnaeus)Three-Toed Sloth (nb.)LionHippopotamusElephantRhinocerosVultureDodo (extinct by 1681*)Barbary FalconBlue WhaleSperm WhaleAntelopeTapirSquirrelPolar BearI

Birds of Paradise


"The birds-of-paradise are members of the family Paradisaeidae [and] the order Passeriformes. The majority of species in this family are found on the island of New Guinea and its satellites, with a few species occurring in the Moluccas and eastern Australia.The family has forty species in 14 genera. The members of this family are perhaps best known for the plumage of the males of most species, in

Machine Power


Illustrations by Vittorio Zonca (1607) from'Novo Teatro di Machine et Edificii'A perpetual water-raising system"Zonca shows a large copperplate engraving of a huge pipe for raising water. It had a large, sealed inverted U-tube with larger diameter on one side. The figure shows the larger tube (A) on the left emptying water at a higher level than the water intake on the right. This water then

Das Baby-Liederbuch


The Baby SongbookTom Seidmann-Freud (née Martha Freud) (1892-1930) was a German illustrator and book artist and niece of Dr Sigmund Freud. Her movable and pop-up books were particularly well regarded.When she was only twenty-two years old, Seidmann-Freud composed verses and produced the illustrations for the charming 1914 songbook seen above [sourced from the State Library of Berlin].Because

The Royal Anjou Bible


"By any definition, it is one of the supreme Bibles of the gothic period"[Christopher de Hamel*, Cambridge]"The House of Anjou ruled over Central and Southern Europe for two centuries. The different areas gradually became close-knit states boasting efficient institutions, lucrative trade and a flourishing cultural life. It was the era of great artists and writers like Giotto, Simone Martini,

China Court Service


Scenes of Service from a small album known as 'Chinese Drawings: Court and Society', hosted by the John Rylands University Library in Manchester.We are told that these illustrations (scanned from colour transparencies) depict 19th century Chinese society and costumes and that these (slightly cropped) illustrations are bordered by blue silk.This collection of delicate hand-painted scenes is part

Blake Illuminations


Example pages from William Blake's:Songs of InnocenceSongs of ExperienceThe Book of ThelVisions of the Daughters of Albion"If a method of Printing which combines the Painter and the Poet is a phenomenon worthy of public attention, provided that it exceeds in elegance all former methods, the Author is sure of his reward." WB 1793"The great advance in Blake's printmaking occurred in 1787, following

The Danse Macabre Collection


Title: Der Tod von Basel : acht Holzschnitte von Rudolf Schiestl zu dem alten Volksliede [LINK]Author: Rudolf Schiestl, 1924Title: Ein moderner Totentanz : dreiundzwanzig Blätter aus dem Bilderbuch des Todes [LINK]Author: Tobias Weiss, 1913Title: La Danse des Morts à Bâle [LINK]Illustrator: (after) Hans Holbein, 1846Title: The dance of death on the Muhlenbruke at Lucerne [LINK]Author: Caspar

Modern Rejection


'Le Petit Journal des Refusées' (The Little Journal of Rejections) by Gelett Burgess was a fun, modernist magazine published in San Francisco in 1896 on butterfly-shaped wallpaper by James Marrion. Only one edition was ever released."The cover of Le Petit Journal des Refusées advertises that it will be published quarterly, but the magazine appeared only once. That issue came out in the summer of

Peking Embassy


The German 1666 title page (after the Dutch original) was rendered into English a couple of years later as:'An embassy from the East-India Company of the United Provinces, to the Grand Tartar Cham, emperor of China: delivered by their excellencies Peter de Goyer and Jacob de Keyzer, at his imperial city of Peking wherein the cities, towns, villages, ports, rivers, &c. in their passages from

Atlas Title Pages


Title: Theatrum Orbis TerrarumCreator: Abraham OrteliusPublished in Antwerp, 1650Title: Atlas Nuevo contiene Todas las Partes del Mundo, adonde Sono exactamente fefialados los Imperios, Monarchias, Reynos Estados, Republicas, y los Pueblos que al presente se conocenCreator: SansonPublisher: Georgio Gallet, Amsterdam, 1699Title: Atlas containing ye Best Maps of the severall parts of the World

Inspirational Quotes


Inspirational QuotesInspirational QuotesInspirational quotes for lifeInspirational QuotesInspirational Quotesinspiration quotes graphicsInspirational QuotesInspirational QuotesInspirational Quotesinspirational mlm succsss quoteInspirational QuotesInspirational QuotesAs High As I Reach A pravsworls Inspirational Quote



'Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux de Paradis et des Rolliers, Suivie de celle des Toucans et des Barbus' -- François Levaillant ; Jacques Barraband ; Perée, Jacques Louis ; Grémillier ; Bouquet, Louis, Paris : Denné le jeune / Perlet, 1806.All the images above were background cleaned fairly meticulously. More to come*.Source material.Subsequent related BibliOdyssey post: Birds of

Funny Quotes


funny quotes girlfriendFunny Quotesfunny examination quotesfunny quotes imageWallpaper With Funny Quotescool funny quotes wallpapersFunny Quotesquotes of the day funnyfunny quotes double your moneyfunny quotes graphicsquote Just some funny quotes n picsFunny QuotesFunny QuotesFunny Quotes About Lifefunny life quotesfunny quotes commentFunny quotes on friendshipFunny Quotes SayingFunny friendship



Wer kommt?(Who's Coming?)1910'Wer kommt? : ein Buch für Kinder von 3 bis 7 Jahren' (Who's Coming? - a Book for Children aged 3 to 7 Years) is online at the State Library of Berlin. There are a few illustrations at the site not displayed in this post. The images above were cropped slightly from the full page layouts.These delightful chromolithographs detailing the house visitors were produced by

Medical Caricatures


Sampling from :::Medical Caricatures, 1736-1932:::{Lowcountry Digital Library}*The Prevailing Epidemic"Ah! you may laugh, my boy; but it's no joke being funny with the influenza!"This print is recorded as anonymous at the source site, but I think the "JL" bottom left of the sketch (as well as the general illustration style) matches up well to the English caricaturist, John Leech, from the

Pushkin Silhouettes


A collection of silhouette illustrations relating to Russian poet, Alexander Pushkin, was published in 1949. The images above were cropped from the full page layouts posted to the da_zdra_per_m LJ site. {if you click through on an image and then "В другом размере", you can view enlarged versions}.The Russian Silhouette Museum advises that the book includes illustration works by a number of



15th Century Artillery Book"1475 – Martin Merz was a gun-master in the service of Frederick I, the victorious, Elector Palatinate. 1469 he was the supreme canon master of Frederick’s army. He remained in the service of the Frederick’s successor Philip the Upright, Elector Palatine of the Rhine. He created his Feuerwerksbuch around 1460-1480 (Munich, BSB Cgm 599). [SOURCE]"Feuerwerksbuch ||BSB Cgm

Punch and Judy


"In my opinion the street Punch is one of those extravagant reliefs from the realities of life which would lose its hold upon the people if it were made moral and instructive.I regard it as quite harmless in its influence, and as an outrageous joke which no one in existence would think of regarding as an incentive to any kind of action or as a model for any kind of conduct.It is possible, I think

The Vallard Atlas


Particular points of interest about this rather extraordinary manuscript :::::It was (anonymously) produced by the Dieppe school (France) in 1547 and was either copied from Portuguese maps or was completed with the input of (a) Portuguese cartographer(s)The maps are known as portolan (navigational) charts [previously]Unusually, north is shown at the bottom of the maps in the style of Muslim

De Aquatilibus


'Petri Bellonii Cenomani De aquatilibus, libri duo cum [epsilon, iota] conibus ad viuam ipsorum effigiem, quoad eius fieri potuit, expressis ...'; 1553 {Pierre Belon}Physician, polymath, traveller, artist and naturalist, Pierre Belon (1517- 1564), was most famously a founding protagonist for the phenomenon of homology in comparative anatomy. He obtained his medical degree at the University of

Journey Underground


"In accordance with your royal order, we hereby send the animal, which sometime since came down to us from the firmament; which animal calls itself man.We have, with sedulous care and patient industry, taught this singular creature in our school, and after a very severe examination, pronounce it to be very quick in its perceptions and very docile in its manners.Nevertheless, from its obtuse and

Australian Lepidoptera


Images from 'Australian Lepidoptera and their Transformations' by AW Scott, with illustrations by his daughters, Harriet and Helena (2nd half of 19th century).Antheraea eucalyptiChelepteryx collesi[b&w version]Chelepteryx exploitus + Eulophocame amaenaAntheraea simplexVarious Agarista speciesCoequosa triangularisPolycyma, Polyommatus + Lycaena speciesSpanocala, Auocala + Catocala

The Temple of Muses


Mythological Figures and FablesThe Chaos or the Origin of the WorldTransformation of Cyguns into a Swan and Phaeton's Sisters into poplar treesBellerophon fights the ChimaeraAchelous in the shape of a Bull is vanquished by HerculesAmphion builds the walls of Thebes by the Music of his LyreArion preserved by a DolphinAtlas supports the Heavens on his shouldersThe Fall of IcarusGlaucus changed into

Crustacean Atlas


Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Herbst (1743-1807) was a German naturalist and entomologist as well as a theologian and chaplain for the Prussian army.Herbst was best known for helping Carl Jablonsky attempt to survey all known beetles (Order Colyoptera). The effort resulted in the massive, but still incomplete 'Naturgeschichte der in-und Ausländischen Insekten' (1785-1806) (see: i, ii)The title of

Lear's Parrots - The Prequel


Edward Lear Sketches of Parrots Relating to 'Illustrations of the Family of Psittacidae, or Parrots' (1832), ca. 1830 (MS Typ 55.9). Houghton Library, Harvard University.A selection of plates from Lear's published book can be seen in the following post from 2008: The Parrots.That book is definitely one of my all-time favourite natural history publications; so I was particularly happy to discover

Sedam Linoreza


Mihailo S. Petrov [Michael S Peter or Mihaila S. Petrova or михаило с петров] (1902 – 1983) was a Serbian graphic artist, painter, illustrator, poet and critic, professor, book and poster designer and typographer.Petrov was a leading graphic protagonist of the Yugoslav anti-war, anti-bourgeois and anti-nationalist Avant-Garde movement known as Zenitism, that flourished in the 1920s."The

Bird's Eye New York


Birds Eye View Map Of New York And Vicinity [1909]Full colour perspective view from Yonkers to South Norwalk in the north and from Freeport to Ellis Island in the south.Brown paper covers printed in black entitled "Bird's Eye View Map Of East And North Rivers And Long Island Sound Price 10 Cents - New York C.S. Hammond & Co. Publishers. Scale 1:80,033."Bird's Eye View of New-York & Brooklyn [1851

Antiquarian Tableware


'De Lucernis Antiquorum Reconditis Libb. Sex: In Quibus Earum Recens Inventarum adhuc ardentium observationes multæ primum afferuntur: Aliorum opiniones omnes de ipsarum attributis dein expenduntur: Earum causæ, proprietates, differenti, æque singulæ deinceps ex rei natura deteguntur: Pluresque dubitationes e traditiis emergentes demum eluuniur. Explicatis diligenter abditissimis Quæstionibus De

The Memoirs of Babur


Baburnamah : a 16th c. autobiographical, illuminated, Persian / Islamic manuscript (copy), courtesy of the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore.The manuscript miniatures below are cropped: please click through to the full-sized, full-page images hosted in Walters' Flickr set.The Fall of SamarkandThe battle of Sultan Ḥusayn Mīrzā againstSultan Masʿūd Mīrzā at Hiṣṣār in the winter of 1495The siege and

Neapolitan Cephalopods


I Cefalopodi!UPDATE: The following quote relates to the author of a different volume"Adolf Naef (1883-1949) was a Swiss zoologist and palaeontologist, famous for his work on cephalopods and systematics.[He] studied at the University of Zurich, under the guidance of Arnold Lang, a former Professor of Jena University and close friend of Ernst Haeckel*. Naef visited and worked in Anton Dorn’s

Dutch Dress


Traditional costumes in Holland in the 18th century(click through for slightly enlarged versions; mouse-over for captions in French)'Afbeeldingen van de kleeding, zeden en gewoonten in de Bataafsche Republiek, met den aanvang der negentiende eeuw' [Pictures of the dress, manners and customs of the Batavian Republic, at the beginning of the 19th c] by E Maaskamp, 1803 was recently uploaded

Chikanobu Woodblock Prints


Ukiyo-e woodblock prints by (Toyohara) Yoshu Chikanobu, from the late 19th century [source]Swimming at OkazakiOai no kata was born in Okazaki and was both beautiful and strong, although of low social status. One day while swimming in a river, a young man tried to bother her, but she quickly defeated him. According to the cartouche, even the shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu praised her courage.Sanuki, moon

Ornithologia Manetti


Hand-coloured engravings from Vol. 4 of Saverio Manetti's 5-volume treatise on birds from 1776:'Storia Naturale Degli Uccelli Trattata con Metodo e Adornata di Figure Intagliate in Rame e Miniate al Naturale. Ornithologia Methodice Digesta Atque Iconibus Aeneis ad Vivum Illuminatis Ornate'[Natural History of the Birds Treated Systematically and Adorned with Copperplate Engraving Illustrations, in

Animated Nature


Hand-coloured engravings from the 1785, 2-volume set:'A New Dictionary of Natural History; or, Compleat Universal Display of Animated Nature. With Accurate Representations of the Most Curious and Beautiful Animals, Elegantly Coloured. By William Frederic Martyn**, Esq'. Both volumes were reissued by Gale in 2010: Volume 1. and Volume 2. The illustrations below are courtesy of Brown U's JCB

Emblemata Nova


First developed in the 16th century, emblems consist of three parts: a symbolic picture (pictura) with a motto or title (inscriptio) and an explanatory poem or epigram (subscriptio). Emblem books proved popular for more than two hundred years and thousands were published across Europe.The purpose of the emblem is to indirectly convey moral, political or religious values in forms that need to be

Australian Landscapes


1860s lithographs of Australian bush scenes by EV Guérard accompaniedby excerpts of turgid hyperbole served with saccharine verbiage.Fern Tree Gully, Dandenong Ranges (Victoria)"One of the most characteristic and beautiful features of the mountain scenery of Australia is what is known as a Fern Tree Gully. It combines the vivid verdure, the cool freshness, and the shadowy softness of an English

Grand Perspectives


"In the 18th and 19th centuries a device with a lens and mirror called the zograscope was used to give an illusion of depth to hand colored engravings called vue d’optique prints.The zograscope is placed over a hand colored print so that the print is reflected in the mirror held at an angle. The spectator looks into the magnifying lens on the front of the instrument to view the reflection. The

The Artillery Book


16th century explosives and fireworks'Artilleriebuch' (BSB Cgm 909) by Walther Litzelmann was recently digitised and uploaded by the Bavarian State Library.It is a ~500 page paper manuscript from 1582 filled with sketches of bombs, cannons and fireworks, for the most part. The elaborate titlepage advises (thanks NINA!) that Litzelmann belonged to the Bavarian Armoury or Arsenal at Ingolstadt and

Cuban Critters


These illustrations are from an atlas of twenty plates that constitutes one volume of 'Histoire Physique, Politique et Naturelle de l'ile de Cuba' (1838-1857), online via the Biodiversity Heritage Library.The BHL has a few more versions (or volumes) here : I think the fourth entry has all 13 volumes from the series, which had an overall editor/author in the Spanish botanist and anarchist, Ramon

Monstrorum Historia


Woodcut illustrations from Aldrovandi's 'History of Monsters'Capreolus PolycerosMonstrum triceps capite Vulpis, Draconis, & AquilaeMonstrum tetrachiron alatum capite humano auritoOrobonis Piscis effigiesCamphurch effigiesHomo Fanesius auritusIcon Monstrosae cuiusdam ChimaeraeMonstrum alatum, & cornutum instar CacodaemonisPseudophyseterMonstrum Marinum rudimenta habitus Episcopi referensEquus

Bird Eggs


Hand-coloured engravings from 1818 by JF NaumannImages from the 5-volume series, 'Die Eier der Vögel Deutschlands und der benachbarten Länder in naturgetreuen Abbildungen und Beschreibungen' by Johann Friedrich Naumann, 1818, at the Center for Retrospective Digitization, Göttingen (GDZ). (~Bird eggs from German and neighbouring countries - described and illustrated) [There are no further

Native Americans


"From the earliest days of contact with the native peoples of North America, European artists made images illustrating their customs, dress and living spaces. Some of the drawings showed the natives as curious specimens from another world, with peculiar habits and clothing. Others emphasized their skill at hunting or their ferocity as warriors. While some images accompanied sensationalist

Iconographia Zoologica


"Iconographia Zoologica is a 19th century collection of zoological prints that was created by bringing together various collections in the library of the Dutch Royal Zoological Society Natura Artis Magistra between 1881 and 1883. [..]In addition to drawings, Iconographia Zoologica has a particularly large number of prints made using a variety of printing techniques and often hand-coloured. They

The Book of Knighthood


Miniatures cropped from the ~1460 manuscript containing Christine Pizan's 'Épître d'Othéa' (Epistle to Hector; sometimes known as the Book of Knighthood) - Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 49, courtesy of the Virtual Manuscript Library of Switzerland [link].Christine de Pizan (Pisan) (c.1363-1430) was raised among the nobility of Paris and pursued intensive studies in literature,

General Herpetology


Illustrations from 'Erpétologie Générale, ou,Histoire Naturelle Complète des Reptiles'by AMC Duméril & G Bibron, 1854.The multi-volume series, 'Erpétologie Générale, ou, Histoire Naturelle Complète des Reptiles', was released over a twenty year period beginning in 1834. The final volume is an atlas with more than one hundred steel engravings that were (I presume) hand-coloured.'Erpétologie

Header Vignettes


Woodcut illustrations by GW Dijsselhoffrom 'Kunst en Samenleving', 1894Gerrit Willem Dijsselhof (1866–1924) was one of the earliest protagonists of the Art Nouveau movement (Nieuwe Kunst) in Holland, having studied fine arts at academies in The Hague and Amsterdam.He came to prominence with a series of sketches of fish and underwater scenes inspired by visits to the Amsterdam zoo aquarium.

The Mysteryes of Nature and Art


The Mysteryes of Nature and Art : Conteined in foure severall Tretises, the first of Water Workes, the Second of Fyer Workes, the third of Drawing, Colouring, Painting, and Engraving, The fourth of divers Experiments, as wel serviceable as delightful: partly collected, and partly of the Authors Peculiar Practice, and Invention.Another manner of forcing the water, whereby the water of any

Persian Poetics


Tuḥfat al-ʻIrāqayn : manuscript, 1604{the images were spliced together from screencaps and it's worth clicking through to look at the higher resolution versions; the notes below are essentially paraphrased from the bibliographic record}This manuscript of Persian poems was written in a small professional nastaliq* script in black ink in two columns laid into the pages. The text is framed within

Caribbean Nature


-Ajoupas du Lagon peinier, appellé le Cirque des Bambous-Description/notes: View of bamboo huts or dwellings on the island of Saint-Domingue, present-day Haiti. Also includes an alligator. The corresponding text discusses a lagoon in Saint-Domingue.-Patte de Figues bananes sur le régime terminé par la Popotte-Description/notes: Cluster (patte) or hand of bananas. The banana tree was introduced



Engravings of Swiss clothing styles from the 1630sHow to admire one another in a good yearGuildmaster and servantsMaidservants: fast mouth-work, slow houseworkSchoolmaster, teacher-assistant and studentNoblewomen and their maidservants going to churchThe marriage court made up of a board member,a clergyman and a member of the local councilLocal aristocratsA good woman beats the wine out of her

Japanese Woodblock Prints


"The Barry Rosensteel Japanese Print Collection consists of 126 woodblock prints that date from the eighteenth to early twentieth centuries. The work of over forty artists is represented in the collection [..]The images portray Japanese culture through detailed depictions of portraits, landscapes, wildlife and theatrical performances, taking into account some of Japan’s rich history. [..]The

Anatomia Vegetal


Visualising the Cell NucleusLeaf growthCell growthCell organelles and cytoplasm visualisationCell membrane and cell wall growthDicotyledon* stem cross-sectionWoody cells of coniferMonocotyledon* stem cross-sectionThese fabulous botanical microanatomy plates constitute the total of illustrations present in 'Anatomia Vegetal' by Frederik Elfving (1929) and published by FE Wachsmuth (Leipzig) which



Falconry is the art of using a trained raptor (bird of prey) to hunt wild quarry like birds or small mammals. The practice dates to at least 2000 BC and birds used for falconry (or hawking, a near-synonymous term in the modern parlance) include buzzards, eagles, Harris hawk, Peregrine falcons, Lanner falcon, Gyrfalcon, goshawks, owls and kestrels, among others.The pastime is complicated and

Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens


"Preposterous!" cried Solomon in a rage.The Kensington Gardens are in London..…they stand quite still pretending to be flowers…The fairies are exquisite dancers.The fairies have their tiffs with the birds.A chrysanthemum heard her..The Serpentine is a lovely lake..They will certainly mischief you.Old Mr. Salford was a crab-apple of an old gentleman..They all tickled him on the shoulder.When her

Speed Maps


"John Speed’s Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine is one of the world’s great cartographic treasures. Published in 1611/12, it marked the first time that comprehensive plans of English and Welsh counties and towns were made available in print. [..]A slice of Tudor and Jacobean life in miniature, its influence was so great that it was used by armies on both sides of the English Civil War. [..]

Bloch Fish


Hand-coloured engravings from 'Oekonomische Naturgeschichte der Fische Deutschlands' 1781-3 by ME Bloch. Series engravers: J.F. Hennig, L. Schmidt, A.F. Schmidt, G. Bodenehr, et al; after J.F. Hennig, Kruger junior, Plumier et al.Marcus Elieser Bloch (1723-1799) was a German physician and ichthyologist, but academic prowess was anything but an inevitability in his life. He pulled himself up by



From scarlet to dusty gold,to yellow flames,to the rareashen emerald,to the orange and black velvetof our girdle gilded by sunflowers,to the sketchlikeamber thorns,your Epiphany,little supreme being,you are a miracle,shimmering ..Pablo Neruda - Ode to a Hummingbird [w]Le StokesLe Petit Rubis de la Caroline, sur une MimeuseOiseau-Mouche Ensipenne, Plumage Complete d'AdulteOiseau-Mouche Mediastin,

Writing Blanks


Writing blanks: "also known as 'school pieces' or 'Christmas pieces', these were single sheets printed from copper or wood engravings, issued by print sellers (and, later, children's booksellers), and sold to children across a broad socio-economic spectrum. 'Regularly published at least twice a year', they were intended as a form of sampler, the child filling in the blank space in the centre of a



Santeria (or La Regla Lucumi or Regla de Ocha) is an Afro-Cuban religion that combines the traditional belief systems of the Yoruba peoples of Nigeria and Benin with elements of Catholicism. It arose in the late 18th and early 19th centuries when the slave trade brought many of these people to the shores of Cuba, Brazil, Haiti, Trinidad and Puerto Rico. The slaves were expected to adopt the

Arabesque Designs


Plates (most) designed by Etienne de Lavallée-Poussin for a posthumous publication: 'Nouvelle Collection d'Arabesques, Propres à la Décoration des Appartemens' 1810. (New collection of arabesques, suitable for decorating apartments. [book]The arabesque is a type of curvilinear decoration in painting, prints and metalwork etc, with intricate intertwining leaf, flower, animal, or geometrical

The Kingdoms of Science


Octope de cuvier, Argonaute argo, Seche commune, Calamar de brongniart, Nautile pompile, Spirule australeAsterie vulgaire, Crinoide lys-de-mer, Ourisin comestible, Spatangue velu, Holothurie comestible, Porpite géanteBelemnite, Conilite, Ammonite, Orbiculine, Scaphite, Baculite, Hamite, Amplexe, TurriliteActinia viridis (Actinie verte)Callianase souterraine, Crangon vulgaire, Squille queue-rude,

In Vino Veritas


Roter VeltelinerRuther GutedelGrüner SilvanerWeißer MoslerFrüher Roter VeltlinerFrüher Blauer WälscherBlauer KölnerBlauer BurgunderGelber Muskateller"The Roman historian Tacitus described how the Germanic peoples always drank wine while holding councils, as they believed nobody could lie effectively when drunk."[source].'Atlas der für den Weinbau Deutschlands und Oesterreichs werthvollsten

The Magic Pudding


"The Magic Pudding is a pie, except when it’s something else, like a steak, or a jam donut, or an apple dumpling, or whatever its owner wants it to be. And it never runs out. No matter how many slices you cut, there’s always something left over. It’s magic.But the Magic Pudding is also alive. It walks and it talks and it’s got a personality like no other. A meaner, sulkier, snider, snarlinger

Friendly Anemones


Actinologia BritannicaThis enigmatic fellow would definitely make my short-list for dinner party guests from throughout history..."Philip Henry Gosse (1810 – 1888) was an English naturalist and popularizer of natural science, virtually the inventor of the seawater aquarium, and a painstaking innovator in the study of marine biology. Gosse is perhaps best known today as the author of Omphalos, an

The Brabant Chronicle


Brabantsche YeestenbyJan Van Boendale (c.1280-1351)"His first work, the Brabantsche yeesten (Brabantine Deeds), is a chronicle in coupled rhyme, dealing with the history of the Brabantine ducal house in the period from ca. 600 to ca. 1350. This chronicle is divided in five parts (“books”), of which the first four describe the history of Brabant before Boendale’s own lifetime, and the fifth is

Visigothic Antiphonal


Antifonario Visigótico Mozárabe de la Catedral de León"Mozarabic chant (also known as Hispanic chant, Old Hispanic chant, Old Spanish chant, or Visigothic chant) is the liturgical plainchant repertory of the Mozarabic rite of the Roman Catholic Church, related to but distinct from Gregorian chant. It is primarily associated with the Iberian Peninsula under Visigothic rule (mainly in what was to

The Woodpecker Book


Megapicus hoematogaster + validusMegapicus imperialis + principalisPicus cactorum + jardiniiPicus ruber + querulusPicus cabanisi + luciani + couldii + mandarinusPicus lueconotus + uralensis + cathphoriusDryocopus funebris + gutturalisDryocopus hodgsonii + leucogasterDryopicus fuscipiennis + Mesopicus hoematostigmaDendropicus fulviscapus + Celepicus fraseri + Mesopicus sanguinolentusMegapicus

Flagging Heraldry


It's not often - thankfully, for all our sakes - that I get to quote myself, but an uncoloured version of this work was referenced on BibliOdyssey previously, and the information is still relevant:Wapen. Des Heyligen Römischen Reichs Teutscher Nation' or Koebel's Wappenbuch (Coat of Arms book) is interesting because the heraldic symbols are all featured on flags - although perhaps not so

Album Pintoresco de la Republica Mexicana


Picturesque Album of the Mexican RepublicVista de la bahia de Acapulco(View of Acapulco Bay)Vista de Aguas Calientes(View of the city of Aquascalientes)Paseo de Las Vigas Mexico[um, this {T}?]Vista del panorama de Mexico(Panoramic view of Mexico City - one of a number in the album)Arrieros - Vista general de GuanajuatoHorsemen and general view of Guanajuato(either the city itself or part of the

Grotesque Mask Heads


These most fabulous grotesque masks come from a suite of about twenty-two prints designed by Cornelis Floris, engraved by Frans Huys and published in Antwerp in 1555 by Hans Liefrinck.The late Baroque / early Mannerist designs incorporate an abstracted zoological motif, in most cases relating to the ocean, within an auricular ornamental style.Auricular describes the smooth, curved, rippling and

The Voyage of La Perouse


"He will direct the draughtsmen embarked on board the frigates to take views of all remarkable places and countries, portraits of the natives of different parts, their dresses, ceremonies, games, buildings, boats and vessels, and all the productions of the sea and land, in each of the three kingdoms of nature, if he shall think that drawings of them will render the descriptions more intelligible.

Buffon's Beasts


The plates below are from a 1753 work called 'Collection des Animaux Quadrupèdes' which forms part of an enormous 36-volume series ('Histoire Naturelle') issued over a forty year period by Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon.[Click through for larger versions of these moderate-to-heavily stylised hand-coloured quadruped engravings. The illustrations are slightly cropped from the full-page