This exquisite, George III period hand colored copper plate engraving is from the book ‘The Aurelian or natural history of English insects, namely Moths and Butterflies’ by Moses Harris and was published in 1766. Moses Harris (b 15 April 1730 – d abt 1788) was an English entomologist and engraver. Our editions are from either the 1st edition published in 1766 or the 2nd edition published in 1778. Harris's detailed engravings showed the insect through varying stages of its life cycle including egg, pupa, chrysalis, caterpillar and adult, he also showed the plants on which they fed and laid eggs upon.
The large hand coloured engraved plates features a variety of beautiful moths and butterflies printed on laid paper. The 18th century print is housed behind glass under a decorative hand coloured pale yellow stepped mount set within the most decorative textured frame.
The plate reads ‘To the Right Honourable Lord Carysfort. This Plate is most Humbly Dedicated by his lordships most obed’t & obliged serv’t Moses Harris’.
This original Georgian engraving is one of a set of matching four, each retailed separately. They were framed at the same gallery in 1987, only one of the frames has the label, we have included a photograph of the label, it reads:
‘Print Gallery, Sarsden Cottage, Sarsden, Oxfordshire. Hand coloured engravings from the collection of H. R. Sykes, Swinbrook, Oxfordshire. Mounted and Framed Summer 1987 as designed by Mr. Sykes.’
Measuring: Frame width 19 7/8 inch (51 cm) by height 23 3/8 inch (59.5 cm). Frame depth 1 1/8 inch (3 cm). Aperture width 9.75 inch (25 cm) by height 12.75 inch (32 cm). Sheet size: Width 30 cm by height 48.5 cm. Plate size width 23.5 cm by height 31 cm.
Condition: PLXVI good condition with minor spot of foxing to the bottom left corner.
This is a beautiful hand coloured engraving that will display excellently in any home. The perfect item for anyone looking for the English country house look.
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