Natural history

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"New-Holland Jabiru"

Artist: Port Jackson Painter
Created: [between 1788 and 1797]
Dimensions: 28.2 x 17.9 cm
Reference: Watling Drawing - no. 302


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Bird in profile, facing to the left. It is depicted standing on a sand-coloured outcrop surrounded by water, which is painted in a gradated wash from blue to white to pink to grey. The horizon line is low and the background is otherwise plain. The bird's head, neck, back, tail and most of the wing are green overlaid with black hatched lines, except for the top of the head which is blue. The rest of the bird is white. The drawing is annotated in ink and pencil.


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  • Port Jackson Painter]
  • The drawing is annotated in ink at bottom left "In Height - 5 - 7 1/2".
  • The drawing is unsigned and undated.
  • The drawing is inscribed in ink at top right with the number "228.". This refers to the catalogue list compiled by John Latham c. 1801 which was acquired with the drawings, and is filed with them at the end of the Watling Drawings series.
  • The drawing is annotated in pencil at top "New-Holland Jabiru Sup ii 295". This has been copied in ink at bottom right "New Holland Jabiru Latham Syn Suppt 2. p. 249 & 5". The page reference is to Latham's Second Supplement to the General Synopsis of Birds (1802).
  • This bird was more recently identified as the Jabiru, Xenorhynchus asiaticus in Hindwood K. A. (1970).
  • The drawing is annotated on the reverse "in height 5 feet 7 inches & a h". The rest of the annotation has been cropped.
  • The author of this catalogue record is Suzanne Stenning.
  • By permission of the trustees of the Natural History Museum (London)
  • Two sets of transparencies held in the Natural History Museum (London) Zoology Library and Picture Library: Picture Library reference number 12302
  • James Lee of Kensington : purchased ; 1902
  • Data sheet available.
  • Latham, John. Supplement II to the General Synopsis of Birds. London: Leigh, Sotheby, 1802.
  • Hindwood K. A. 'The "Watling" drawings with incidental notes on the "Lambert" and the "Latham" drawings', Proceedings of the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales for the years 1968-69 (1970).