Natural History Collection

The Natural History Collection is a remarkable collection in terms of both quality and quantity. Since the first purchases made by George Hall Elliott, the first City Librarian, the Natural History Collection has been augmented by succeeding librarians through purchase of the most important books published in this field. Outstanding amongst this collection of fine copies of important works are fine illustrated books, most in colour and finished by hand. Many have distinguished provenances and can therefore be termed collector's copies. The items range from books published in 1645, including works illustrated by Redoute, Audubon, Ehret, Lear and Thorburn. Redoute's "Les Roses" in 3 volumes, bound by Simit and published in Paris, 1817-1824 is from the library of the Duc D'Orleans. This is an ideal companion collection to the Travel Collection also held at Belfast Central Library, reflecting the interests of exploration and scientific discovery of the 18th and 19th centuries. The volumes in this collection are evidence of the drive to classify the natural world with its ever increasing diversity. The volumes present an overview of scientific and stylistic development over time. Political influences (the French preoccupation with all things African as a result of Napoleon's campaigns there) and the trends of the time (leisure activities, hunting, fishing) are visible in the works making up this collection.

Strengths

The only complete sets of Elliott, Gould, and Leraillant are held. Outstanding amongst this collection of fine copies of important works are fine illustrated books, most in colour and finished by hand. Many have distinguished provenances and can therefore be termed collector's copies. The items range from books published in 1645, including works illustrated by Redoute, Audubon, Ehret, Lear and Thorburn. Redoute's "Les Roses" in 3 volumes, bound by Simit and published in Paris, 1817-1824 is from the library of the Duc D'Orleans.

Physical characteristics

1,000 volumes

Description or Catalogue

Items in this collection are listed on an inhouse database.

Coverage

1645
Accrual
Accrual Policy
Active
Accrual Method
Donation
Accrual Periodicity
Regular
Added by Libraries NI | Last updated on: 24 May 2018