Auckland (Parnell), T. Cranwell, no date [before 1877]. Small folio (27.8 x 22.3 cm). 30 sheets with mounted ferns, each with a small, mounted label with the Latin name. Original green leather spine and carved rimu wood-panels. Marbled endpapers. Contained in recent clamshell box (30.6 x 24.7 x 4.9 cm) of black cloth with black morocco label with gilt ornamental bands and title on the 'spine'.
A very rare herbarium with an extraordinary cover of wooden panels with bevelled edges and wood carvings of ruled lines and floral motifs. This is probably the work of the Vienna-born cabinetmaker Anton Seuffert (1815-1887), who migrated to New Zealand in the 1860's. The hand-carving of the boards suggest that this was produced in a very small edition. There were, however, other board designs as well. The mounted ferns are in very good condition. A single loose fern, perhaps of a different origin, is loosely inserted. An additional leaf, from another work, is inserted in as well. The ferns included seem to differ from copy to copy. Direct comparison to a copy on the internet shows that no less than 12 species are different. This copy contains the following: 1. Hymenophyllum dilatatum; 2. Hymenophyllum aeruginosum; 3. Hymenophylum demissum; 4. Lomaeria fraseri; 5. Lomaria fluviatilis; 6. Nephrodium hispidum; 7. Cyathophorum pennatim; 8. Pteris scaberula; 9. Trichomanes elongatum; 10. Cyathea deabata; 11. Adiantum affine; 12. Aspidium coriaceam; 13. Lomaria nigra; 14. Hymenophyllum scabrum; 15. Trichomanes reniforme; 16. Nephrodium decompositum; 17. Davillia novae-zealandiae; 18. Adiantum aethiopicum; 19. Leptoptera hymenophylloides; 20. Lindsaea lessoni; 21. Asplenium bulbiferum; 22. Adiantum cunninghamii; 23. Hymenophyllum flabellatum; 24. Aspidium aculeatum; 25. Lygodium articulatum; 26. Polypodium rugulosum; 27. Trichomanes strictum; 28. Pteris macilenta; 29. Polypodium tenellum; 30. Asplenium falcatum. We found two auction records, both of copies inscribed in 1876. The State Library of New South Wales has a copy with 29 leaves. Spine cover with some expert repairs; crack in front board skilfully repaired; otherwise in very good condition. Internally a very good copy.