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Toucan viridis: Seligmann 1749-76

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  • Title: Toucan viridis
  • Author: Johann Michael Seligmann
  • Date: 1749-76
  • Medium: Hand-colored copperplate engraving
  • Condition: Very Good +
  • Inches: 8 1/4 x 11 1/8 [Plate Mark]
  • Centimeters: 20.96 x 28.26 [Plate Mark]
  • Product ID: 002667

Image of a green toucan by Johann Michael Seligmann.

Johann Michael Seligmann (1720-1762) was a German artist and engraver most famous for his work in ornithology, the study of birds. His most famous work is his 1749 publication, Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel (Collection of Various Foreign and Rare Birds).

Seligmann honed his artistic skills at the Nürnberger Malerakademie, and his early works included engravings of rocks and minerals. He is also known for contributing to other natural history publications like Konrad Gesner's Opera Botanica (1754).

Seligmann's unique contribution to ornithology came through his re-engravings of works by British naturalists Mark Catesby and George Edwards. He not only reproduced their bird illustrations in a smaller format but also embellished them with additional details like scenic backgrounds, creating visually stunning and informative plates. This compilation, titled Sammlung verschiedener ausländischer und seltener Vögel, became a well-regarded publication available in German and Dutch translations.