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ARC

XAVIERO MANETTI

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These ornithological prints were produced in Florence, in one of the most sumptuous publications of the Italian eighteenth century. The beautiful engravings were the forerunners of the great ornithological works of the future. The plates are na´ve in character, and have a charm all of their own. The work was called Storia Naturale degli Uccelli (1767-1776), and its production was one of the most remarkable publishing ventures ever undertaken in Florence. Work started in 1767, and took ten years to complete. It was larger, better engraved and more vividly coloured than any previous work on birds. The attitudes of the birds themselves are almost human in character, and are said to be mimicking the mannerisms and habits of contemporary Italian society. His book may still be rated among the very greatest bird books.