Ornithologie, ou méthode contenant la division des oiseaux en ordres, sections, genres, espèces et leurs variétés

Autore: BRISSON, Mathurin-Jacques (1723-1806)

Tipografo: Cl. Jean-Baptiste Bauche

Dati tipografici: Paris, 1760

6 volumes, 4to (vols. 1-2: 250x195 mm; vols. 3-6: 255x190 mm). Vol.1: xxiv, 526, lxxiii, [3] pp. and 37 plates; vol. 22: [4], 516, lxvii, [3] pp. and 46 plates; vol. 3: [4], 734, xci, [1] pp. and 37 plates; vol. 4: [4], 576, liv, [2] pp. and 46 plates; vol. 5: [4], 544, lv, [1] pp. and 42 plates; vol. 6: [4], 543, [1], lxv, [3], 146 (Supplementum), xxii, [2] pp. and 47+6 plates. With an engraved title page on each volume and overall 261 engraved folding plates by François-Nicolas Martinet, the same illustrator and engraver of Buffon's Histoire naturelle des oiseaux, which will appear 10 years later. Double title page in Latin and French and double text in Latin and French in two columns. Contemporary mottled calf gilt, double red morocco lettering piece on spine with title (vols. 1-2: “Brisson / Ornitholg”; vols. 3-6: “Dictionair / des / animaux”) and volume number, marbled endleaves, red edges (vols. 1-2) and gilt edges (vols. 3-6) (spine and corners restored, rubbed and worn). Bookplate and stamp of the Jesuit Collège Saint Gervais of Liège on all volumes. Some light browning and foxing, but all in all a good copy. First edition. “One of the early systematic treatises on birds by a contemporary of Linné” (Zimmer, 94). “Written by one of the greatest connoisseurs of birds of the time, the work deals with 1336 species [...]. Brisson knew by sight more than 800 of the species he described. He did not use the binomial system and his systematical classification of the birds differed from that of Linnaeus, surpassing it and being less superficial” (Anker, no. 69). Brisson was a French zoologist and naturalist, first disciple, then assistant of René Antoine Ferchault de Réaumur. In 1756 he published the Le Règne animal. He held the chair of physics at the College of Navarre, and from 1759 was a member of the Academy of Sciences. Nissen IVB, no. 145; Ronsil, no. 391.