Johann Michael Seligmann

1720 – 1762

Splendid natural history works of German artist, publisher and engraver

Seligmann, a Nürnberg publisher and engraver, published some of the most splendid natural history works of his time such as Trew’s ‘Hortus Nitidissimis’, and Gessner’s ‘Opera botanica’.

The German artist and engraver was best known for his ornithological artwork in Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel (Collection of various foreign and rare birds) which included plates based on the works of Mark Catesby and George Edwards

In 1749, he began to issue a nine-volume compilation of the work of renowned British naturalists Mark Catesby and George Edwards.

The plates of Catesby and Edwards were re-engraved by Seligmann, further embellished by the addition of figures of plants not present in the originals. These botanical and scenic backgrounds were added for a superb decorative effect.

The works of Edwards A natural history of uncommon birds and Gleanings of natural history were translated into German and combined with work of Catesby into one work under the title ‘Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel’.

Over the next thirty years (1749-1776), the gradual release of these eagerly anticipated volumes brought vivid, charming images of New World birds to continental European audiences and made Seligmann a venerated name in natural history circles.

The volumes were named Sammlung Verschiedener Ausländischer und Seltener Vogel (Collection of various foreign and rare birds).

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