WHITE, John (c. 1756-1832)
Journal of a Voyage to New South Wales with Sixty-five plates of Non descript Animals, Birds, Lizards, Serpents, curious Cones of Trees and other Natural Productions
London: J. Debrett, 1790. Quarto. (11 1/4 x 9 1/2 inches). Engraved title and 65 hand coloured plates. 7pp. list of subscribers. Hh4 and Kk4 bound in as cancels, as usual.
Expertly bound to style in half russia and period marbled paper covered boards, flat spine ruled and decorated in gilt, original red morocco lettering piece
Provenance: Earls of Lovelace (armorial bookplate)
Rare handcoloured issue of White's celebrated First Fleet Journal: among the most desirable works of Australian exploration and natural history.
John White served as surgeon general to the settlement of New South Wales and sailed with the First Fleet. His account is the best of the early descriptions of the natural history of the colony. "White's Journal is of key importance to any collection of Australiana and is essential to a collection of Foundation books" (Wantrup, p.78). Hill adds that "the long appendix is very important as it describes the natural history of the new colony; the first major work of this sort."
The beautiful plates are largely after drawings by Sarah Stone, based on the natural history specimens sent by White back to London. A prolific and highly accomplished painter of natural history subjects in London between 1777 and 1806, Stone worked for Sir Ashton Lever, documenting Lever's vast private collection of ornithological, zoological, and ethnographical specimens.
This a rare example of the deluxe coloured issue and with provenance to the Earls of Lovelace.
Abbey Travel , 605; Ayer/Zimmer, 672; Casey Wood, 626; Davidson, pp. 81-6; Ferguson, 97; Ford, 2495; Hill 1858; Nissen ZBI, 4390; Wantrup, 17.