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The Torner Collection of Sessé and Mociño Biological Illustrations


The Torner Collection of Sessé and Mociño Biological Illustrations

Catalogue compiled by James J. White, Rogers McVaugh and Robert W. Kiger; Historical Introduction by Rogers McVaugh; Photography, Digital Reproduction, and HTML by Frank A. Reynolds. Produced by the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation and The Universal Library; Published by Carnegie Mellon CD Press.

1998. 5 9/16 x 4 7/8"; 4 oz. $40.00 plus shipping and handling. ISBN 0-913196-60-6.


Special offer:

The Institute is offering Rogers McVaugh's Botanical Results of the Sessé & Mociño Expedition (1787–1803) VII. A Guide to Relevant Scientific Names of Plants together with the Torner Collection of Sessé & Mociño Biological Illustrations CD-ROM for a special price of $75.00.

Pairing McVaugh's exhaustive accounting of the approximately 7500 plant names relating to the Expedition with the full-color digital reproductions of watercolor botanical drawings from the Expedition provides scholars with the most comprehensive information yet assembled about the botanical results of the Spanish Royal Botanical Expedition to New Spain.

Note: The 25% discount for Hunt Institute Associates applies to this offer; the quantity discount on purchases of five or more publications does not apply.


The CD-ROM contains 1,989 full-color digital reproductions of watercolor drawings from the 1787–1803 Spanish Royal Expedition to New Spain in the collection of the Hunt Institute, with catalogue and historical introduction. The CD-ROM is platform independent and requires a color monitor and a Web browser, preferably version 4.0 or higher of Netscape Navigator or Microsoft Internet Explorer.

In 1981 the Hunt Institute acquired the original collection of botanical and zoological illustrations made during the Spanish exploring expedition of 1787–1803 sent to New Spain under the command of Martin de Sessé y Lacasta and José Mariano Mociño. The collection comprises approximately 2,000 watercolor drawings and sketches; about 1,800 are of botanical subjects, and the remainder are of various animal species (fish, birds, insects, reptiles and small mammals). It was purchased for the Institute's permanent collection by the Hunt Foundation.

The Sessé & Mociño expedition, as it is commonly called, explored extensively in the Caribbean, Mexico and northern Central America, with forays also in Baja and Alta California and as far north as Nootka and Alaska. The drawings were executed by a number of artists, the most accomplished of whom were Atanasio Echeverría y Godoy and Juan Vicente de la Cerda. In technical and artistic quality, Echeverría's work compares favorably with any other in the history of biological illustration. Notwithstanding this artistic excellence, the chief value of the collection lies in its scientific and historical significance. See Rogers McVaugh's Botanical Results of the Sessé & Mociño Expedition (1787–1803) VII. A Guide to Relevant Scientific Names of Plants for more information about the collection.



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