Natural history

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"Black-lined Grosbeak", native name "Wee-bong"

Artist: Port Jackson Painter
Created: [between 1788 and 1797]
Dimensions: 21.2 x 15.7 cm
Reference: Watling Drawing - no. 243


hide detailed image description

Bird in profile, facing to the right, perched on a tree stump on a yellow - green base against a plain background. The bird has a red bill. The upper parts of its body are brown overlaid with black hatched lines, with a red patch on the rump. The underparts are pale grey. The whole body is overlaid with black horizontal striations, except for the red rump. The drawing is framed by a pencil border and annotated in ink and pencil.


hide notes

  • Port Jackson Painter]
  • The drawing is annotated in pale brown ink at lower left "Native name Wee-bong Natural size, the only one yet seen. May".
  • The drawing is unsigned and undated.
  • The drawing is inscribed in ink at top right with the number "164.". 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 "Black-lined Grosbeak. Sup. 2. 198.". This has been copied in ink at lower left, "Black lined Grosbeack Latham Syn. Suppt 2. p. 198.". The page reference is to Latham's Second Supplement to the General Synopsis of Birds (1802).
  • This bird was more recently identified as the Firetail Finch, Zonaeginthus bellus in Hindwood K. A. (1970).
  • The drawing is annotated in pencil "Lambert Drawing II. 21". This refers to a related set of drawings from the collections of the 13th Earl of Derby, held in the Library at Knowsley Hall, Lancashire.
  • A separate label is attached to the mount at lower right. It is inscribed in pencil "Type".
  • 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 12243
  • 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).
  • This drawing is reproduced in Wheeler, A. and Smith, B, The Art of the First Fleet and other early Australian Drawings. New Haven and London, Yale University Press, 1988. (Plate 201, p. 188).