Newcastle upon Tyne: printed by and for S. Hodgson, R. Beilby, & T. Bewick, Newcastle: sold by them, by G. G. J. & J. Robinson, & C. Dilly, London, 1791. Second Edition. Full Calf. A superlative example of the second (and best) edition: "no mere reprint: it was a largely revised, expanded, and improved work. Impressions of the cuts are far more satisfactory, there are drastic revisions and many additions in the text, many blocks have been reworked, twelve new figures are added, and the fourteen descriptions of bats make their first appearance." (Roscoe) Demy 8vo: x,483,pp, with title-vignette, 212 figures of four-legged creatures, and 107 vignettes and tailpieces, all engraved on wood by Bewick. Armorial bookplate of Edward Nicholas Hurt (1795-1867). Beautifully bound in contemporary full tree calf (evidentially the original binding), flat spine in six compartments with central gilt ornament in each, red morocco lettering piece gilt. End sheets foxed else virtually pristine with strong impressions of the cuts. Roscoe 2b. Tatterfield, pp. 79-103. Lowndes I, p. 168. Bibliotheca Bibliographici 431. Fine. Item #BB1760
"Few first books have been published to such unanimous acclaim as the History of Quadrupeds. . . . The three most influential periodicals of the day, the Critical Review, the Analytical Review and the English Review, united in awarding the Quadrupeds full length articles . . . Though Beilby's text was praised, . . . it was the woodcuts that riveted critics's attention. . . . Designed and cut almost exclusively without borders, they dominated the page. Although Bewick is said to have preferred cuts with borders, their removal from an aesthetic point of view was nothing less than liberating. Even the small tailpieces achieved a resonance out of all proportion to their size . . . Bewick directed all his energies to perfecting the new [second] edition." (Tatterfield) N. B. With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed. (Fine Editions Ltd is a member of the Independent Online Booksellers Association, and we subscribe to its codes of ethics.).