Johann Elias Ridinger, The Great Brown Ant-eater

Ridinger, Johann Elias (Ulm 1698 – Augsburg 1767). The Great Brown Ant-eater. Looking out of the picture, he sits “before a herd of ants and licks the same off its paw” (Th.). Colored etching with engraving. Inscribed: VRSVS MAXIMVS FORMICARVM NIGRICANS. / Der große braune Ameisen Bär. / L’ours grand et brun des fournus. / Familia IV. Fünffzähige. / J. El. Ridinger fec. et excud. A.V. 12⅛ × 8¼ in (30.7 × 20.8 cm).

Thienemann & Schwarz 1080. – IN THE RIDINGERS’ ORIGINAL COLORING from the unnumbered Colored Animal Kingdom created since 1754 and concluded finally posthumously not before 1773 (“Complete copies are next to untraceable”, so Weigel, Art Cat., sect. XXVIII, Ridinger Appendix 63a as merely 120-sheet torso, 1857 ! , but also just individual plates quite rarely on the market only at niemeyer’s presently nevertheless the one as the others). – Remaining uncolored contrary to the prospectus, a second edition from the plates shortened even under loss of animals and with modified titling and the Ridinger inscription removed, yet now numbered, was published by Engelbrecht/Herzberg in Augsburg 1824/25.

“ The bear belongs to the indigenous animals in Europe

and his fatherland actually ranges from Poland up to the outmost northern borders … His inhabitation is in the thickest wildernesses on mountains … Their fur is very warm and one uses it to great benefit for sundry services ”

(Ridinger’s sons in the preamble to pt. II, pp. 13 f. [German] & 11 f. [French] resp., enclosed in copy).

Watermarked C & I Honig as that sturdy Dutch quality paper Ridinger used in line with his preamble to the Principal Colors of Horses

“on account of the fine illumination” for the colored works

“as for this purpose it is the most decent and best”. – Margins on three sides 2.2-2.8 cm, below 5.3 cm wide. – Faint tidemark in the midst of the lower white plate/paper field and two narrow brown streaks below in the right white lateral margin.

Offer no. 15,929 | EUR 670. | export price EUR 637. (c. US$ 770.) + shipping

Ridinger’s Colored Animal Kingdom in Original Coloring

available in

A Great Plenitude of Individual Plates


An Absolutely Exceptional Complete Provenance Copy

„ danke für die prompte Lieferung der beiden hübschen Cassas-Blätter (von Antiochia). Den Überweisungsauftrag gab ich gestern zur Bank. Viele Grüße und ein schönes Wochenende … “

(Herr K. O., 6. Februar 2009)


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