Copper engraving, 26 x 20.5 cm, map of the Bay of Bengal engraved by Johann Michael Seligmann after Edwards, original hand colour, blank verso.
Edwards was gifted amateur scientist and ornithologist. His four-volume work ‘A Natural History Of Uncommon Birds and of some other Rare and Undescribed Animals’ was published between 1743 and 1751, and contains over 200 outstanding plates, etched by Edwards himself. This map of the British Isles and northwestern Europe charts Edwards’s travels between 1716 and 1730 and features male and female stag beetles from Borneo, the bill of an Egyptian Ibis and a Jamaican Hummingbird.
Shirley explains that Edwards’ work ‘A Natural History Of Uncommon Birds’ was translated into French and German editions, both published by Seligmann, but the adds ‘these editions do not contain (as far as I have been able to discern) the British Isles map …’ This is clearly not the case, but it is possible that this curious map was not included in all copies. Shirley, Printed Maps Of The British Isles, Edwards I.