Le Couroucou Temminck, Male
Coloured engravingpublished 1806-1807
About the work
This hand-coloured print shows ‘Le Couroucou Temminck’, a Giant Trogan (a long-tailed tropical bird from India). The print was published as an illustration to the first of three volumes of the French ornithological book ‘Histoire Naturelle des Promérops, et des Guêpiers’ (1807).
The text accompanying ‘Le Couroucou Temminck’ explains that this bird from India is the strongest and largest of its kind and is ‘nearly 18 inches length, from the top of the head to the end of the tail, and its body has almost twice the power of that of the greatest species of America’.
About the artist
Auguste Pelletier was a French illustrator, based in London. He painted birds, fruit and occasionally landscapes. He exhibited at the Royal Academy, the Old Water Colour Society and the Royal Watercolour Society. Of his Royal Academy exhibits, 22 were of birds, mostly foreign species, some of which he acquired from the ornithologist, taxidermist and dealer in natural history specimens Benjamin Leaderbeater. He was commissioned by French ornithologist François Levaillant to produce illustrations for ‘Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux de Paradis’ (Paris, 1801-06) and ‘Histoire Naturelle des Promérops et des Guépiers’ (Paris, 1806-07). He also illustrated Thomas Horsfield's ‘Zoological Researches in Java and the neighboring islands’ (1821-24).