Page:Audubon and His Journals.djvu/91

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59
AUDUBON

from his winter's work. With this, and the greater part of the savings of his wife, which she had hoarded to forward this journey, so long the goal of their hopes, another farewell was taken, the many valued drawings packed up, and on April 26, 1826, the vessel with the naturalist and his precious freight left New Orleans for England.

The journals from this date, until May 1, 1829, are kept with the usual regularity, and fortunately have escaped the destruction which has befallen earlier volumes. They tell of one of the most interesting periods of Audubon's life, and are given beyond,—not entire, yet so fully that I pass on at once to the last date they contain, which marks Audubon's return to America, May 5, 1829.

His time abroad had seen the publication of the "Birds of America"[1] successfully begun, had procured him sub-

  1. Of the great folios, parts i.-v., containing plates 1-25, were originally published at successive dates (not ascertained) in 1827; parts vi.-x., plates 26-50, appeared in the course of 1828, all in London. The whole work was completed in 1838; it is supposed to have been issued in 87 parts of 5 plates each, making the actual total of 435 plates, giving 1065 figures of birds. On the completion of the series, the plates were to be bound in 4 vols. Vol. i., pll. 1-100, 1827-30; vol. ii., pll. 101-200, 1831-34; vol. iii., pll. 201-300, 1834-35; vol. iv., pll. 301-435, 1835-38 (completed June 30). These folios had no text except the title-leaf of each volume. The original price was two guineas a part; a complete copy is now worth $1,500 to $2,000, according to condition of binding, etc., and is scarce at any price. The text to the plates appeared under the different title of "Ornithological Biography," in 5 large 8vo volumes, Edinburgh, 1831-39; vol. i., 1831 ; vol. ii., 1834; vol. iii., 1835; vol. iv., 1838; vol. v., 1839. In 1840-44, the work reappeared in octavo, text and plates together, under the original title of "Birds of America;" the text somewhat modified by the omission of the " Delineations of American Scenery and Manners," the addition of some new matter acquired after 1839, and change in the names of many species to agree with the nomenclature of Audubon's Synopsis of 1839; the plates reduced by the camera lucida, rearranged and renumbered, making 500 in all. The two original works, thus put together and modified, became the first octavo edition called " Birds of America," issued in 100 parts, to be bound in 7 volumes, 1840-44. There have been various subsequent issues, partial or complete, upon which I cannot here enlarge. For full bibliographical data see Dr. Coues' "Birds of the Colorado Valley," Appendix, 1878, pp. 612, 618, 625, 629, 644, 661, 666, 669 and 686.—E. C.