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Monograph of the Phasianidae

Monograph of the Phasianidae

The 'Monograph of the Phasianidae' is considered the highest achievement of Elliot's career. Elliot was fascinated by the dramatic appearance and behavior of these birds. Each specimen is placed in its natural landscape habitat, to show to greatest effect the brilliant splendor of its plumage. Anker praises Wolf's 'beautiful colored plates... among the best ever produced for Elliot's monographs,' as Sacheverell Sitwell's 'Fine Bird Books' judges the prints to be 'of the same rank as Audubon and Edward Lear. ' Each lithograph is completely hand-colored and printed on an Imperial Folio size sheet.to these 
Joseph Wolf, who was 'without exception, the best all-round animal artist who ever lived' (Sir Edwin Landseer). The magnificent size and beautiful colouring of the plates after Joseph Wolf's charcoal drawings reflect the importance which Elliot attached to the Phasianidae. Of all the families in the ornithological system, he regarded it as the one most vital to the human race, "containing within it the species that afford food for thousands of mankind, and also those which are the original source of all the domestic poultry met with throughout the civilized world."

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