Did you know only 250 sets of John Gould’s The Birds of Australia were published? The Queensland Museum library has one complete set of the seven volumes and supplement, as well as an incomplete set that was one of the first acquisitions for library in 1876.
Gould acknowledged in the preface that it was mammoth ten-year effort creating this work. There are 602 lithograph plates illustrating the bird species, of which half were unknown to natural historians at the time. Elizabeth, Gould’s wife, sketched most of these species, which formed the basis of the lithographs.