Printed between 1827 and 1838, John James Audubon’s Birds of America is considered to be the archetype of wildlife illustration. It contains 435 life-sized watercolours of North American birds. View all hand-engraved plates and high-resolution downloads here.
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Georg Christoph Lichtenberg 1742-1799
“(Lion) fell in love in his tenth year with a boy named Schmidt (best pupil in the school), the son of a tailor, liked to hear him talked about and got all the boys to converse with him, never spoke to him himself but it gave him great pleasure to hear that the boy had spoken of him. Climbed up on a wall after school to see him go out of school. Now he still remembers his physiognomy very clearly, and he was far from handsome, a turned-up nose and red cheeks. But he was first in school. I should be sorry if by this free confession I should increase the world’s mistrust, but I was a human being and if happiness is ever to be attained in this world it must not be sought through concealment, not at all, nothing firm can come about in that way. Lasting happiness is to be found only in uprightness and sincerity…” From The Waste Books, translated by R. J. Hollingdale
“Lion” is one of the names Lichtenberg adopted when he wrote about himself in the third person, i.e. objectively.
Album of Persian and Indian calligraphy and paintings
This is an album (muraqqaʿ) of Persian and Indian calligraphy and paintings, most probably compiled in the thirteenth century AH / nineteenth CE. The album contains thirty-four illustrations, three of which are attributed to the Mughal painter Abū al-Ḥasan (Nādir al-al-Zamān), two to Manūhar, and one each to Dawlat and Ṣādiqī. There are several portraits of rulers and courtiers, as well as scenes from historical manuscripts, such as Bāburnāmah and Gulistān by Saʿdī. This album is also significant for the number of works by the artist Shayk Abbāsī, who worked in the eleventh century AH / seventeenth CE. The signed calligraphic pieces bear the names of ʿImād al-Ḥasanī (d. 1024 AH / 1615 CE), ʿAlī Riz̤ā-ʾi ʿAbbāsī, Mīr ʿAlī, and ʿAbd al-Rashīd al-Daylamī (d. 1081 AH / 1670-1 CE). The album was initially in an accordion format and was later made into a codex. The lacquer binding with central ovals and pendants decorated with flowers dates to the thirteenth century AH / nineteenth CE. — Walters Art Museum Illuminated Manuscripts
Click the thumbnails above for details of the paintings.
Source: Freer and Sackler Galleries.
The Mid Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon or Mooncake Festival is intricately lined to the legends of Chang E, the mythical Moon Goddess of Immortality. According to “Li-Ji”, an ancient Chinese book recording customs and ceremonies, the Chinese Emperor should offer sacrifices to the sun in spring and the moon in autumn. The 15th day of the 8th lunar month is the day called “Mid-Autumn”. The night on the 15th of the 8th lunar month is also called “Night of the Moon”. Under the Song Dynasty (420), the day was officially declared the Mid-Autumn Festival.