Le Faucon Pélerin femelle [Peregrin Falcon]
[Pl. 25] [Rome: Bouchard & Gravier, 1775]. Etching with engraving, coloured by hand. Very good condition apart from some light foxing. Image size (including text): 15 x 12 1/4 inches. Sheet size: 20 5/8 x 15 inches.
A beautiful, exuberant image from one of the rarest colour-plate bird books 'Recueil de cent-trente-trois Oiseaux des plus belle especes'.
A fine print of a female Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus), a member of the most widespread landbird family in the world; its seventeen races covering every landmass except the high arctic and antarctic. The Peregrine Falcon is the most successful falcon in the world. Almost wherever there are falcons, the peregrine is there. Man's interference has, however, severely fragmented the distribution, and in some parts of its range the peregrine falcon has faced the threat of local distinction. Maddalena Bouchard may be considered by some as a primitive among bird artists; however, while her birds are not true to nature in the conventional sense, they have more exuberance and charm than almost any other ornithological art with the possible exception of Manetti's Ornithologia (1765-76). Bouchard was also responsible for plates in Bonelli's Hortus Romanus (Rome 1772-93), which was also published by Bouchard and Gravier.
Cf. Anker 53; cf. Nissen IVB 124; cf. Fine Birds Books (1990), p. 79; cf. Ripley and Scriber p. 37.