Antiquarian Auctions

SA Auction #106 begins on 13 Apr 2023

US Auction #15 begins on 03 May 2023

H.C. Andrews


Containing Coloured Engravings, With Latin and English Descriptions, Dissections, Etc. of All the Known Species of That Extensive and Distinguished Tribe of Plants.

Published: Richard Taylor & Co. for the Author, London, 1804 - 1809

Edition: 1st.'s

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Five volumes bound in half leather with marbled boards and leather gilt titled spine labels. Volumes 1-3 are in the original contemporary bindings. Volume 4 has been rebacked more recently with an attempt to match the brown leather spine with the original and retains the original marbled boards. Volume 5 has been recased in similar half leather but has new (and fairly similar) marbled paper over the boards. Volumes 1-4 have the same matching original ownership ex-libris on the front pastedowns. Each volume has magnificent coloured engraved plates (see below) - each of a different Erica species, with descriptions in Latin and English on the opposite page. Many of these species come from South Africa and in particular the Cape.

Volume 1 has the coloured engraved title page as well as the printed title page dated 1804. A pencilled note on the front free endpaper notes that it has 50 engravings which is complete and also supplies the plate count of the other volumes.

Volume 2 has the printed title page also dated 1804 and has 48 plates. (Of 50)

Volume 3 has the printed title page dated 1806 and has 48 plates (of 50)

Volume 4 lacks a title page (1807) and has 48 plates. (of 50)

Volume 5 lacks a title page (1808) and has 36 plates. (of 50)

The total number of plates in the 5 volumes is thus 230 (of 250). It is apparently very rare to find complete sets. SABIB – Vol. 1, Page 69, lists several incomplete sets.

Condition: This is a good or better set. There is some staining of endpapers and mild ghosting/offsetting of some plates on to the adjacent text pages. In general the plates themselves are very clean. The titles have been partially trimmed in a few. A more than acceptable copy of a work more than 200 years old!

Henry Charles Andrews published The Heathery as a convenient, working edition of his lavish, large-format folio work “Coloured Engravings of Heaths”. When completed, The Heathery comprised six volumes, each containing 50 hand-coloured plates with accompanying brief text, and an alphabetical index numbering the plates. The introductory pages were essentially similar to those in Coloured engravings but the text was revised according to experience. Inevitably, the 'Introduction' (in vol. 1) was quite different and solely an explanation of the new work; it contained a statement that The Heathery' would be published in parts (as all Andrews' other publications had been) and that "when one volume is completed, every necessary requisite for binding will be given". However, it is our contention that this was not the case, and that the individual volumes of 'The Heathery' were published as separate, complete volumes. (Cleevely, Nelson & Oliver - 2003). The absence of Volume Six in this lot can be explained by the fact that it seems to have been published much later - possibly in 1830. This is evidenced by the late (dated) watermarks in some of the plates - a couple as late as 1826. (this was pointed out by Robin Fryde of Frank R. Thorold and he is quoted thus in SABIB).               

  • Binding Condition: About Very Good
  • Overall Condition: About Very Good
  • Size: 8vo. (24 x 15cms.)
  • Sold By: Ronald Levine - Modern First Editions
  • Contact Person: Ronald Levine
  • Country: South Africa
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Telephone: 011643 8437
  • Preferred Payment Methods: EFT for S.African customers and Internation Bank Tranfer for customers abroad. I am unable to accept payment by credit card.
  • Trade Associations: SABDA

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