[Allan], and MARSHALL, C. H. T. The Game Birds of India, Burmah, and
Ceylon. Calcutta:Sri Lanka, Published
by A.0. Hume and C. H. T. Marshall, [1879-81].
edition. Illustrated with engraved title pages in each volume and 141
chromolithographic plates and 3 lithographed title pages,
most of them depicting birds but with 4 plates of eggs. 8vo, original
black clothe, rebacked in morocco with gilt lettering, new endpapers.
, , ii, 279; , ii, 264; , ii, 438, vi pp. The plates in
volume one have a small damp stain in the blank corners, which does not
extend into the images and doesn't appear on any of the text leaves.
Otherwise a very clean set.
ambitious undertaking - The
entire cost of the production was borne by Hume, and it was for this
reason that the set was published in limited number. The
compilers originally intended to use hand-colored engravings for The
plates, but when they realized that it would take five years to have the
necessary plates colored, they fell back on chromolithography. The text
is by Hume; Marshall's contribution was to get the plates produced in
London and brought back to India. This
landmark study in the history of Ornithology offers an in-depth study of
nearly 150 birds found in Indian sub-continent. A.O. Hume, generally
known as the father of Indian National Congress, was also a keen
Ornithologist. He is commonly referred to as the 'Pope of Indian
Ornithology' owing to his immense contribution to ornithological studies.
his time in India Hume accumulated the largest collection of Asiatic
birds in the world, which he housed in a museum and library at his home
in Simla. He used this collection to produce a massive publication on
all the birds of India. Unfortunately this work was lost in 1885 when
his servants sold all of Hume’s manuscripts as waste paper. He also
started the quarterly journal Stray Feathers - A journal of ornithology
for India and dependencies in 1872. He used the journal to publish
descriptions of his new discoveries, such as Hume's Owl, Hume's Wheatear
and Hume's Whitethroat. This
beautiful work is still considered to be the ultimate in Indian