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Thomas Caverhill Jerdon (British, 1811-1872) AN EXTENSIVE COLLECTION OF ORIGINAL ARTWORK for “Reptiles of India, Parts 1-3”.

  • $ 1,200,000.00


Thomas Caverhill Jerdon (British, 1811-1872)
AN EXTENSIVE COLLECTION OF ORIGINAL ARTWORK for “Reptiles of India, Parts 1-3”.
445 fine watercolors (9 x 6 inches), 190 pencil drawings and 210 proof engravings and lithographs (some hand-colored) including studies of snakes, lizards, crocodiles, turtles, and frogs, the majority annotated by the artist, loose in three modern cloth boxes. A selection is shown here.

Provenance: Gift of the artist to Dr A. Günther at The British Museum; autograph note signed of Henry Haversham Godwin Austen (1834-1923) inserted in Part 1: “194 sheets containing the figures of Indian snakes ... left at Brit Museum by [Jerdon], shortly before his death & given over to me in 1878 by Dr. Günther, they have been numbered by me just as they were left. H.H. Godwin Austen, London Feb 1879’.

JERDON’S UNPUBLISHED ORIGINAL ARTWORK FOR HIS UNFINISHED WORK ON INDIAN REPTILES, intended to follow his previous works “The Birds of India” (1862-64), and Mammals of India (1874). Jerdon handed over part of the artwork to fellow zoologist Dr A. Günther at The British Museum shortly before his death (see provenance), presumably for Günther to bring his unfinished work to completion. Jerdon’s work contributed to the latter’s Reptiles of British India (1864). This artwork then passed to the distinguished surveyor of India, Henry Haversham Godwin-Austen, for whom the Karakoram peak K2 was originally named Mount Godwin-Austen.

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