Lot 285: ALS in German, signed "A. Fr. von Humboldt, Kon. Oberburgermeister," four pages on two adjoining sheets, 7.25 x 9, July 2, 1793. An early letter to calligrapher and etcher Johann Gottfried Köppel, who had traveled through the Franconian principalities of Ansbach and Bayreuth within the last two years, and had also visited the caves at Muggendorf. Humboldt thanks him for his willingness to provide some copper engravings of polar bears, and bemoans the lack of national collections on that field. In very good condition, with central vertical and horizontal folds, overall toning, and toned tape remnants to the left edge. Humboldt was just 23 when he wrote this letter and his curiosity about the world is certainly evident. He would soon make geological and botanical tours through Europe before embarking on his famous Latin American expedition in 1800. An exceptionally early letter.
RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 456
Wednesday, 15th July 2015
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