Red-clawed crab

    Date
    1731
    Creator
    Mark Catesby (1683 - 1749, British) , Naturalist
    Object type
    Library reference
    18894
    Material
    Technique
    Subject
    Content object
    nature
       > animal
          > crab
    Description
    Zoological study of a red-clawed crab, Perisesarma bidens, referred to here as Cancer marinus chelis rubris, shown alongside an unidentified coral specimen, referred to as Titanokeratophyton ramocissimum.

    Inscribed below: 'Cancer Shelis Rubris Titanokeratophyton &c'

    Written in the associated description: 'It hath two Claws of unewual Bigness, red at the Ends, and eight Legs, which Seem of less Use to them than in other Crabs, for when on the Ground they crawl with flow Pace, dragging their bodies after them, but are mostly seen grappling with their Claws and hanging to some Sea Plant or other marine Substance'.

    Plate 37 from volume II of Mark Catesby’s The natural history of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands (London, 1731).

    Mark Catesby (1683-1749), British naturalist was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1733. Travelling under the auspices of the Royal Society, Catesby recorded the earliest western scientific descriptions of the flora and fauna of the ‘New World’. He was the first naturalist to use folio-sized colour plates in a natural history book, and etched the copper plates himself before hand-colouring each individual print with watercolours.
    Associated place
    <The World>
       > North America
          > United States
    <The World>
       > North America
          > Bahamas
    Credit
    ©The Royal Society
    Image number
    RS.18783
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