This edition is focused on the works of John Gould and Henry Constantine Richter. Richter created over a thousand color plates for John Gould. You will find that the plates included herein are attributed to both Gould and Richter.
The sources for this edition are form the volumes of A monograph of the Trochilidæ, or family of humming-birds (volumes 1-5) and a supplement that was completed after Gould’s death by R. Bowdler Sharpe.
A few notes about John Gould from An Analytical Index to the Works of the Late John Gould, F. R. S. by Richard Bowdler Sharpe, Adlard Tommaso Salvadori (Comte)
John Gould was born at Lyme, in Dorsetshire, on the 14th of September, 1804, and when quite an infant his parents Went to live at Stoke Hill, near Guildford, and it was in this beautiful neighborhood that the child first imbibed his notions of the beauty of natural life. In the year 1818, when the future great ornithologist was fourteen years old, his father received a good appointment in the Royal Gardens at Windsor under Mr. J. T. Aiton, and there the boy assisted his father in gardening. He always remembered these youthful days in later life, when he would recount how he had picked many a bunch of dandelions for Queen Charlotte’s dandelion-tea. He had now begun to study birds in earnest, and he made the acquaintance of many British species for the first time in the royal domain; while there is no doubt that the botanical knowledge acquired at this time also stood him in good stead at a later period.
My friend Mr. Gerrard remembers him in these early days as a man of singular energy, with a good knowledge of the art of mounting animals, and indeed some of the best taxidermists in England were working under Gould at that time—such men as Baker, Gilbert, and others.
Not long after his appointment to his post at the Zoological Society John Gould married Miss Coxen, the daughter of a Kentish gentleman named Nicholas Coxen; and to this lady is due much of the ultimate success of her husband’s career, for she was as accomplished an artist as she was one of the best of wives.
After the death of Mrs. Gould, it was long before her husband could find a competent artist to supply her place; but he was at length fortunate enough to secure the services of Mr. Richter, who was a skilful lithographer.