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Plate XXVIII depicting oysters and other bivalve molluscs from the 'Ambonese Curiosity Cabinet' by Georgius Everhardus Rumphius.

Date: 1705
Overall: 381 x 245 mm, 0.008 kg
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Engraving
Object No: 00017867
Place Manufactured:Amsterdam

User Terms

    An engraving depicting eleven oysters and other bivalve marine molluscs from the island of Ambon in eastern Indionesia. The page is Plate XXVIII from the book 'Ambonese Curiosity Cabinet' researched and written by Georgius Everhardus Rumphius and published in 1705.
    Rumphius was employed by the Dutch East India Company and undertook extensive natural history research on Ambon where he lived for over 40 years.

    SignificanceGeorgius Everhardus Rumphius, also known as the "Indian Pliny", was one of the great tropical naturalists of
    the seventeenth century. Born in Germany, he spent most of his life in the employ of the Dutch East India Company, stationed on the island of Ambon in eastern Indonesia. Despite extensive personal tragedies, including the loss of his sight, Rumphius perservered to produce a definitive work on the area.
    HistoryAccompanying text reads:

    Oysters make up the eight genus of Shells, with a variety of shapes, except that they all agree in having a shell that is on the outside rough and scaly, while inside they are silvery or like Mother-of-Pearl (Chapter 37 pp 212 - 220).

    Plate XLVII no 1

    Ostreum Echinatum or Lazarus Clapper, named because they close tightly together with their crooked hooks, and will not fall apart even if one clacks with them. There are many kinds of these, which differ from each other in colour and shape, for there are penned, nailed, scaled, white, grey, pyed, brown with white nails, beautiful orange, also lemon
    yellow ones, but the most outstanding of them all is shown here, which is a beautiful blood-red (p218).

    Plate XLVIII no 2
    Ostreum Echinatum or Lazarus Clapper, a greyish white, flamed with red spots (p 218).

    Plate XLVIII no 3
    Rock Doublet (p 218).

    Plate XLVIII no 4
    Venus Shell with Hair (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 5
    Old-Wife Shell, wrinkled and very uncommon (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 6
    Venus Doublet, ribbed and very rare because it is seldom paired and is always damaged (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 7
    Coral Doublets, one side is ribbed and furrowed (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 8
    Coral Doublets, the other side has some knobbles on its ribs, resembling coral (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 9
    Nail Shell, very rare (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 10
    Fool's Cap Shell, doubled (p 220).

    Plate XLVIII no 11
    A Shell that need not give way to any other, a piece of perfect beauty both as to shape, colour and clear design (p 220).
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