Cabinet of Natural Curiosities: The Complete Plates in Colour, 1734-1765
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Cabinet of Natural Curiosities: The Complete Plates in Colour, 1734-1765

4.34 of 5 stars 4.34  ·  rating details  ·  906 ratings  ·  32 reviews
Albertus Seba's curious creatures: a most unusual collection of natural specimens Albertus Seba's Cabinet of Natural Curiosities is one of the 18th century's greatest natural history achievements and remains one of the most prized natural history books of all time.Though it was common for men of his profession to collect natural specimens for research purposes, Amsterdamba...more
Hardcover, 543 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Taschen (first published January 1st 2001)
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Douglas Dalrymple
So many of the pathologies of contemporary life come in through the eyes. It’s only a matter of time before the vile sickness of “screen-gaze” gets a more scientific-sounding name. This gorgeous, almost wordless book is the cure.
Taschen has always published heavy, lush art books, but they've outdone themselves with Cabinet of Natural Curiosities (weighing in at thirteen pounds). Albertus Seba, a pharmacist in eighteenth-century Amsterdam, collected beautiful and strange animals, plants, and insects. After years of collecting, he commissioned illustrators for each specimen. This book is a reproduction of the eighteenth-century four-volume set. These amazing illustrations are works of art, but beware — small children migh...more
One of those rare completely awesome and completely random finds at a really cool bookstore (Lucky Comics). This is reproduction of Albertus Seba's specimen drawings. It weighs about 15 pounds and is written in French, English and German, just in case I'm feeling particularly trilingual on any given day. There's no words for how kick ass the illustrations are. This will sit loud and proud on my coffee table for infinite perusing.
This book is nothing less than something at which one marvels. I happened across it in the oversized section of my library and every thing about it is huge: it's vision, it's scope, and it's actual size (which weighs in at 11.9 pounds).

Here's the product description off of Amazon:
Albertus Seba's curious creatures: a most unusual collection of natural specimens Albertus Seba's Cabinet of Natural Curiosities is one of the 18th century's greatest natural history achievements and remains one of the...more
David Lynn
Oct 22, 2007 David Lynn rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone with eyeballs
Creative, Inventive, amazing Albertus Seba will have you thinking that every Dutch person coming out of the 18th century was brillian...
Hands down one of the most amazing things I have in my library, life.
Its spendy but if you have a library near you that has this or are fortunate enough to live near the strand i can say how quickly you should go and take a look at this.

i could go on and on but if you want to read what Taschen (one of the better companies out there who produced this book and did...more
I work at Barnes & Noble, and was walking through the bargain section when I saw this book. I'm astonished that so many people have paid close to $200 for this! I paid around twenty, with my discount. It was only $25.00 originally. I think it may be a slightly different version, meant for B&N only, but the content is exactly the same. The only thing I've noticed to be different is the picture on the cover. There are two coral as opposed to one.

Anyway, I was drawn to it because the artwor...more
not so much "read" as "ooohed and ahhhhed and petted the pages"
Sarah Crampton
This is a great addition for a collector of hefty coffee table books or anybody fascinated by the Victorians' scientific proclivity to categorize, rank and classify just about everything in the natural world. The book boasts excellent illustrations, not to mention a stature large and heavy enough for braining home intruders. You can't lose.
melissa seley
dying to own a copy of this coffeetable beauty, than an a bunch of audobon society guides - to birds, trees, shells, mammals, sea creatures on and on till there are none left. been putting them on xmas lists since i was six. somehow, no one else gets how great it would be to unwrap one. sigh.
Ok so I don't actually own this monsterous marvel....yet! (hint, hint) ...However I think I've pretty much looked at every page while passing through various shops and bookstores since I discovered it. So beautiful and inspiring, it should be free!
Nov 29, 2012 noelle marked it as to-read
Shelves: own
guys, you know what happened yesterday? i found this at the thrift store. the 30lb, 18" version. the one that's a loooooot of money. at the thrift store. for $4. four. dollars.
This is one of the best gifts I've ever received; Each page of this book is exquisite. The perfect accompaniment to a lazy weekend day.
Bonnie Jeanne
Jan 25, 2009 Bonnie Jeanne marked it as to-read
Shelves: collecting
Cabinet of Natural Curiosities: The Complete Plates in Colour, 1734-1765 by Irmgard Musch (2005)
Sarah Keliher
Jan 07, 2011 Sarah Keliher is currently reading it
I just hauled this beautiful thing home with me. I love being a bookseller
Amazing Illustrations! I love old illustrations like the ones in this book.
Some of the most amazing natural history illustrations in this book.
The kind of artifact they'll need to pry from my cold dead hands.
Favourtie plate: Fictive metamorphosis of American frogs into fish.
Photo Jenny
Beeyooteeful! My tattoo is from this book.
Absolutely gorgeous. Stirs the imagination.
Mar 27, 2009 Ken-ichi marked it as on-hold  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: learning, snoot
Found a slightly coffee-stained copy for $18!
steve ross
This thing will make your ass catch on fire.
Matt Keefe
Beautiful, strange, and ancient.
L a n c e
the only coffee table book you want.
This book is absurd.

gorgeous and inspiring.
The birds are my favorite.
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Albertus Seba (May 12, 1665, Etzel near Friedeburg - May 2, 1736, Amsterdam) was a Dutch pharmacist, zoologist and collector.

Born in East-Frisia, Seba moved to Amsterdam as an apprentice and opened around 1700 a pharmacy near the harbour. Seba asked sailors and ship surgeons to bring exotic plants and animal products he could use for preparing drugs. Seba also started to collect snakes, birds, ins...more
More about Albertus Seba...
Natural Curiosities 14 Framable Prints From the Cabinet of Albertus Seba Butterflies & Insects Seba's Snakes and Lizards: 240 Illustrations Shells & Corals Sea Creatures CD-ROM and Book

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