Oh, how I love these vintage color bookplates. I’ve been tempted to launch a site dedicated to all of the amazing bird images that I’ve found in vintage books. I get so excited when I find some to share with everyone – they’re so beautifully done. This one is from Zoological Illustrations, or Original Figures and Descriptions. Volume I, Second Series from 1829. It is unclear if this beautiful bird was drawn by the author William Swainson and colorized by some un-named watercolorist or if the author only crafted the words to describe it.
When this bird image was drawn, this bird was called a vernal parrakeet or psittaulus vernalis, now I believe it is referred to as a vernal hanging parrot or Loriculus vernalis. This little bird grows to only 5 inches in length which might be why it was identified as a species not seen prior to 1829 when the book it was included in was published. (Can you believe such a brilliantly colored image has lasted almost 200 years and is in such great condition?!)
This little green bird with his bright red tail and yellow features looks quite the charmer. He is one of several hanging parrot species from the tropics of southern Asia.
This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.