image catesbyrs vol249
Image number: RS.18795
Credit: ©The Royal Society

Brown snake

Date

1731

Creator

Mark Catesby (1683-1749, British), Naturalist

Object type

Library reference

18894

Material

Technique

Subject

Content object

nature
   > animal
      > snake

Description

Zoological study of a brown snake, Storeria dekayi, referred to here as Anguis minor fuscus maculatus. Shown twined around an unidentified plant root, alongside a coral bean Erythrina herbacea specimen.

Inscribed below: 'Corallodendron &c Anguis &c'

Written in the associated description: 'These are always small, seldom appear above Ground, but are dug up and found twisting about the Roots of Shrubs and other Plants.'

Plate 49 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