Edwards | George

A Natural History Of Uncommon Birds

First Edition



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First edition of A Natural History of Uncommon Birds and Gleanings of Natural History, two works in seven volumes, complete with 362 hand colored illustrated plates.

While Edwards intended for the first book, A Natural History of Uncommon Birds, to complete his work on ornithological history, he was persuaded to extend his work, thus Gleanings of Natural History was added. The work is considered incomplete without both works presented together, as they are here. Considered at its date of issue “…one of the most important of all Bird Books, both as a Fine Bird Book and a work of Ornithology.” It remains one of the most important works.

Quarto, [seven volumes], bound in contemporary brown morocco. Titles in gilt over red morocco, raised bands, decorative gilt design with two birds on each spine. Spines expertly rebound in matching brown morocco, some residual wear to boards. First edition, second issue of Volume I and II, both lacking the subscribers’ list. First issue of all three volumes of Gleanings Of Natural History. Frontispiece portrait of Edwards in Volume I, not colored. Lacking frontispiece portrait, as called for in Volume V. The text of volumes 1-4 are in English, with volumes 5-7 in both French and English.

All seven volumes with marbled endpapers, clean text throughout. There are occasional scholarly notes in pencil next to illustrated plates, could be removed if desired. Small holes in Volume 6, not directly impacting the illustrations. This set is complete with 362 color illustrated plates, portrait of a Samojeed in Volume II (uncolored). Some light but even toning to each plate.

Noted issues: Lacking title page of Volume IV, Short tear to Plate 123, tissue repair to text of page 158, tissue repair to Plate 192, tear to text of page 198, tear to Plate 277. (Nissen IVB 286-289) (Fine Bird Books, 93) (Lisney 189, 194, 198, 201, 205, 208) An exceptionally important work of ornithology, complete with 362 hand colored engravings by George Edwards.


Additional information

Location Published



Printed for the Author, at the College of Physicians in Warwick-Lane


First Edition

Date Published

1743 – 1764


Leather bound


Near Fine


Edwards | George