HOUGHTON, William (c.1829-c.1895)

British Fresh-Water Fishes

London, William Mackenzie, [1879]. First edition. Two folio volumes. 41 plates of fishes by A.F. Lydon after Benjamin Fawcett, coloured from woodblocks and heightened with gum arabic. Plates protected by tissue-guards. Numerous engraved chapter vignettes and 64 wood-engraved illustrations with river and lake scenes. Title-pages printed in red and black. Original publisher's brick textured cloth. Black-, gilt-, blind-stamped with piscatorial motives like anglers, dragon flies, water lilies and bull rushes on both covers. All edges gilt. Occasional light foxing in margins mostly to preliminary leafs.

A complete and well-preserved original copy.

Publisher's copies, in general, have badly joined and sewn gatherings and this explains why many of them were rebound in new covers. Houghton was a keen observer. In the preface of his book we found the following characteristic remark: "Although some additional knowledge on the subject of the British fresh-water fishes has been gained since the publications of the works of Yarrell and Couch, - excellent as those are, - yet much remains obscure" and this critical note was apparently the reason to investigate thoroughly the salmonid species. He gives descriptions of the Loch Stennis trout, Loch Leven trout, Windermere char, Torgog char, Loch Killin char and distinguishes about twenty other salmonid species. The fishes are magnificently depicted. In the 20th century taxonomists have reduced this number to less than 10 true species. Nissen, Schöne Fischbücher, 1951, nr. 78.

Price: € 1700,00

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