Finders, Keepers, Eight Collectors: Treasures and Oddities of Natural History

Finders, Keepers, Eight Collectors: Treasures and Oddities of Natural History

by Stephen Jay Gould
     
 
Here are Purcell's wonderfully exotic photographs of teeth and other human artifacts from the collection of Peter the Great; moles, pigs, and dogs from van Heurn's many boxes of perfectly preserved skins; and all manner of preserved life from Rothschild's Birds of Paradise to the fish of Agassiz.

Overview

Here are Purcell's wonderfully exotic photographs of teeth and other human artifacts from the collection of Peter the Great; moles, pigs, and dogs from van Heurn's many boxes of perfectly preserved skins; and all manner of preserved life from Rothschild's Birds of Paradise to the fish of Agassiz.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Purcell's color photographs of historic collections of taxidermy, fossils and other exotic artifacts are accompanied by an essay by Gould. (Jan.)
William Beatty
For their second striking combination of Purcell's beautiful photographs and Gould's provocative text (the first was "Illuminations" ), the pair consider eight collectors, whom they discuss on the bases of what they collected and what kind of people they were. Among the eight are both the great--naturalist Louis Agassiz and czar Peter the Great--and the obscure--Dutch local biologist Willem van Heurn and amateur paleontologist Mary Anning. The items they collected run from outre preparations of human fetuses (don't gaze at these unless you have a strong stomach) to such more usual but outstandingly exemplified specimens as fossilized ammonites, a mind-boggling battalion of European moles' skins, a collection of braincasts (most housed in cigar boxes), and birds of paradise carcasses and details. The assembling of the materials in Peter the Great's Wunderkammern, many of them the anatomical preparations done by Frederick Ruysch, opens the book and sets the stage for the other collectors, each with his or her personal quirks and scientific (or nonscientific) approaches and methods. A worthy companion to its award-winning predecessor.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780091753283
Publisher:
Random House Adult Trade Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/01/1992
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
9.45(w) x 11.42(h) x (d)

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