London: Ebury Press, 2003. Hard Cover. 8vo. Near Fine / Near Fine. Item #003217
Black cloth boards with silver lettering to spine. Burgundy endpapers. , 246 p.p. + [20 p.p.] plates of B&W illustrations. Damp staining to foot of boards and to foot of spine of dust jacket. Bumping to top edge of dust jacket. John Gould, author and publisher of some of the most magnificent illustrated works on birds ever to have been created, was a genius and a cad. His vast, colourful volumes eclipsed even his American counterpart Audubon in accuracy and art. Isabella Tree's lively and evocative biography reveals a story of discovery, ambition and betrayal - touching on some of the greatest wonders of the Victorian era, from the arrival of the first giraffe in London to Gould's crucial role in Darwin's theory of natural selection.