A fact page from the 'Banks' Florilegium, Part XIII, Australia, Plates 271 - 292'. Published by Alecto Historical Editions and the British Museum (Natural History) in 1983. The page lists the practical details of publishing the Florilegium such as "The engravings - Plates, Paper, Stamps, Master printer, Proofing editor, Handcolouring editor, Printers and Handcolourists, Plate restorers, Method". Also, "The Text - Botany, Typography, Typefaces". Finally the "Presentation - Mounts, Solander cases".
SignificanceOne of the greatest achievements of the voyage of the ENDEAVOUR (1768-1771) was the extensive collection of botanical specimens that had been assembled by Sir Joseph Banks. Gathered on shore expeditions, after returning to ship they were drawn quickly by the artist Sydney Parkinson, and scientifically classified by Banks. Despite his best efforts, the Florilegium was not published in Bank's lifetime and only appeared in a very limited edition 200 years later.
HistorySir Joseph Banks's original intention had been to publish the botanical results of the voyage but after only a few plates were engraved, he seems to have realised the scale of the undertaking and it came to a halt. Only in our own era was a decision made to bring the project to fruition, and in one of the great feats of publishing, Alecto Editions issued the entire Florilegium in a limited number (100) of parts in the 1980’s.
This page details the finer considerations relating to publishing of the Bank's Florilegium. Alecto Editions worked in association with the British Museum (Natural History) and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney, along with various hand colourists, restorers and designers.