Traiectum ad Rhenum [Utrecht], O. I. Paddenburg, 1822. 8vo (23.3 x 13.9 cm). Half-title, title page, 140 pp.; four large, folded, engraved plates. Original blind boards.
The author's thesis, on the common seal, published at quite a young age. With a hand-written dedication to the great French zoologist Anselme Gaëtan Desmarest (1784-1838) who had published the first monograph on the Phocidae, or family of seals, just four years earlier. The Dutch medical doctor, zoologist, anatomist and pathologist Willem Vrolik (1801-1863) is perhaps better known for his work on human anatomy and embryology, but he also wrote on various other mammals, including the chimpanzee and babirusa. A museum devoted to his achievements is situated in Amsterdam. "Along with specimens collected by his father, anatomist Gerardus Vrolik (1775-1859), he had amassed an impressive anatomical collection during his career. After Willem's death, donations from various sources have added significantly to the collection. The 'Museum Vrolikianum' consists of various human and zoological body parts, fetuses and plaster casts that exhibit different aspects of embryology, pathology and anatomy. The museum also contains numerous examples of congenital malformations. Willem Vrolik published teratological works on cyclopia, the pathogenesis of congenital anomalies, and a treatise on conjoined twins. In the 1840s he published a Handboek der ziektekundige ontleedkunde (Handbook of pathological anatomy), as well as Tabulae ad illustrandam embryogenes in hominis et mammalium tam naturalem quam abnormem. The latter book contained numerous illustrative plates on the embryogenesis of vertebrates, including congenital anomalies of various species, including man. In 1850, the book won the Prix Montyon from the French Academy of Sciences" (Wikipedia). Uncut. Shelf-wear to boards, otherwise a good, clean copy. Rare. Cat. BM(NH), p. 2242. Neither in Nissen ZBI nor in Wood.