Natural History of British Fishes

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Edward Donovanpublished this collection between 1802-1808. This was a great work on the fish species of Great Britain was full of his own designs, purposely made from the specimens in a recent state, and for the most part whilst living.
They were sort after for their incredible detail and the meticulous nature of the hand colouring. Donovan used genuine gold and silver paints to make the fish scales shimmer with that iridescent quality.
Edward Donovanís life is a sad tale. In his youth he was wealthy and used much of his fortune to produce natural history publications. His works sold well, although the great labour he bestowed upon the colouring of the plates he published, rendered his works expensive. He made little money out of his endeavours and ended his days in poverty, embittered by the thought he had been cheated by his bookseller and publishing partner.