John Gould “Hydrochelidon Nigra.”From The Birds of Great Britain. London: Gould, 1862-1874. Lithograph. Original hand-coloring. Full margins. Fine condition.
John Gould (1804-1881) was one of the most respected and prolific ornithologists of all time. His prints are noted for their particularly realistic and accurate appearance. He was able to achieve this accuracy through his years of ornithological study. For this series, the two artists were Edward Lear and Gould’s wife Elizabeth. Often Gould gave his artists sketches of the birds in their natural habitats, which these artists then finished and lithographed onto the stones, hand-coloring each print once it was run off. For their realism and vibrant hand-coloring, these are some of the most beautiful bird prints ever produced.