Mark Catesby

English naturalist, painter and etcher (1683-1749)

Mark Catesby (24 March 1682/83 - 23 December 1749) was an English naturalist. Between 1729 and 1747 Catesby published his book Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands. The book was the first publication to describe flora and fauna of North America. The book described 220 birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, insects, mammals and plants.

Plate from Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands (1731-1743).

Catesby studied natural history in London. Catesby collected seeds in Virginia from 1714 to 1719.

Gallery of Catesby's imagesEdit


  • Jackson, Christine E., (1985) Bird Etchings: the illustrators and their books, 1655-1855. Ithaca: Cornell University Press ISBN 0-8014-9684-5
  • Walters, Michael (2003) A Concise History of Ornithology. London: Christopher Helm ISBN 1-873403-97-6
  • Wiatt, Alex L. (1992) The Descendants of Stephen Field of King and Queen County, Virginia, 1721, Fredericksburg VA: BookCrafters

Myers, Amy R. W. & Pritchard, M. B. (1998) "Empire's nature. Mark Catesby's New World vision," Chapel Hill & London: University of North Carolina Press ISBN 0-8078-4762-3

Other websitesEdit