John James Audubon. Plate 32. “Polar Hare.” From The Quadrupeds of North America.
New York: Victor G. Audubon, 1849-54. First edition. Royal octavo. Lithograph. Original hand coloring. Very good condition.
John James Audubon, perhaps the most famous of American ornithologists, is undeservedly less well known for his wonderful work depicting The Quadrupeds of North America. The Birds of America was conceived as a portrayal of all the birds in America, and with its great success, Audubon was inspired to do the same sort of work on the animals of America, with the assistance of his son, John Woodhouse Audubon. This resulted in the publication of the folio edition of The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America, illustrating with marvelous skill 150 animal species, including Deer, Bears, Mice, and so on. As with the work on ornithology, this volume was later issued in octavo size, making it accessible to the general public. The fascinating prints of American animals taken from this smaller edition of Audubon’s ‘forgotten’ volumes, exhibit the quality and attractive appearance that speak to the unjustness of the work’s fate.
More Quadrupeds from Audubon's first Octavo edition: