Albertus Seba’s Cabinet of Curiosities is one of the 18th century’s greatest natural history achievements and remains one of the most prized natural history books of all time.
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Hardcover, 11.4 x 17.3 in., 588 pages
Exotic plants, corals and crocodiles, birds and butterflies. Albertus Seba’s extraordinary catalogue of natural specimens is not only one of the 18th century’s greatest natural history achievements, but also one of the most prized natural history books of all time. It is a beautiful tribute to the breadth and the detail of creatures great and small, as well as to some now-extinct animals.
Though it was common for men of his profession to collect natural specimens for research purposes, Amsterdam-based pharmacist Seba (1665–1736) had a passion that led him far beyond the call of duty. His amazing, unprecedented collection of animals, plants, and insects from all around the world gained international fame. In 1731, after decades of collecting, Seba commissioned illustrations of each and every specimen and arranged the publication of a four-volume catalogue detailing his entire collection—from strange and exotic plants to snakes, frogs, crocodiles, shellfish, corals, insects, butterflies, and more, as well as fantastic beasts, such as a hydra and a dragon. This superb, complete reproduction is taken from a rare hand-colored original. The introduction offers background information about the fascinating tradition of the cabinet of curiosities to which Seba belonged and an additional annex, written by contemporary biologists, provides descriptions of the marvelous and myriad specimens.
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