Green parrot, Botany Bay, New South Wales, birds, ornithology,original hand coloured engraving c.1797


"The Green Parrot of Botany Bay"

Original hand coloured copper engraving published March 1st, 1797.
Although song and story immortalises Botany Bay as the first settlement of Australia, it was not the first outpost of the British Empire in the Antipodes. (See part of th story in "Fleet of Maritme Explorers" at portraits.htm.) Although the first settlers were seen as the flotsam and jetsam of Georgian British Society(arguably a consequence of the Industrial Revolution), among their number were people of educaton, be they Governor Arthur Philip, John White Esquire (Surgeon General) and other literate souls who gathered the new wonders to known science, recorded them in paintings and journals. Also, before the age of photography it was necessary to shoot a male and female of a species to be sent to London to be scentifically recorded. This is how we find our green friend here immortalised in a copper plate engraving, to satiate the ornithological appetite of the learned British elite and institutions. Being soft copper no more than 100 prints could be pressed before the definition would have been compromised.
Size of image (plate mark)= 12cm x 19.5cm
Antique Frame presentation utilizing conservation materials (cotton matboards and UV blocking glass)= 25cm x 38cm
Timber mahogany-coloured polished frame has a rope detail on outer edge and an ornate gold fillet.