[Himalayan Monal Pheasant] Lophophorus Impevanus
14 x 21 inches
A scarce lithograph in striking original hand colour; drawn and lithographed by Elizabeth Gould and published in London in 1831.
This bold and beautiful rendition of the Himalayan Pheasant was produced early in the career of John and Elizabeth Gould before they became synonymous with, and dominated, the field of ornithological illustration in England. At the time John Gould was working as a taxidermist for the Zoological Society of London and both he and his wife were fascinated by the anatomy of birds, both domestic and exotic. Elizabeth Gould (1804-1841) was only 27 years old when she worked on A Century of Birds from the Himalayan Mountains, published between 1831 and 1832. It comprised 80 plates of Himalayan birds, all drawn from taxidermy and was to be the first publication in the series of Gould monographs that would come to dominate the world of ornithological study during the Victorian age. Elizabeth died young at the age of 37 but in such a short life she accomplished so much. In addition to her extraordinary artistic output she managed to give birth to 8 children and accompany her husband on a trip to Australia.