Auction 130, Lot 814

"[Lot of 4 - Botanicals]", Miller, Philip

Subject: Natural History, Botanicals

Period: 1755-56 (dated)

Publication: Figures of the most Beautiful, Useful and Uncommon Plants…

Color: Hand Color

7.8 x 12.3 inches
19.8 x 31.2 cm

Four superb engravings from this scarce and important English botanical book. Scottish botanist Philip Miller (1691-1771) was curator at the Chelsea Physic Garden - the nucleus of the Royal Botanic Gardens. Miller employed the best botanical artists and engravers of the day to provide these illustrations as an accompaniment to the Gardener's Dictionary. By the time Miller died, he had named more than five thousand species under cultivation. He was also the first to conduct experiments showing that insects aid in flower pollination. These engravings are also unusual for their printing method, in which tinted inks were used (rather than just the standard black ink), and then they were finished with hand-coloring. This method gives the illustrations a particularly rich tone. These large, folio size 18th century botanical engravings are now quite scarce as they were produced in limited numbers.


Condition: A

Estimate: $550 - $600

Sold for: $400

Closed on 12/2/2009