Guide to the Gallery of Fishes in the Department of Zoology of the British Museum (Natural History), Cromwell Road, London, SW

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THE unique collection described in this guide consists mainly of stuffed specimens, coloured, as far as possible, to resemble the fishes in their natural conditions. “I believe,” says the director in the preface, “that there is no other collection of fishes in a public museum in which the specimens are presented without the usual iron supports, with sufficient space around each fish and in natural colours, instead of the oily-brown which all dried fishes tend to acquire.” All preserved material is kept in a separate building, where it is accessible only to special applicants. This arrangement is very desirable, since arrays of jars displaying mystifying anatomical details merely serve to distract the general student of fishes who wishes to devote his attention to the external features of as many species as possible, acquiring, at the same time, such information about each as will enable him to understand their natural relationships, their places in the economy of nature, and the special character and variety of fish-life in all its aspects. This is the chief object of the collection, and of the descriptive labels attached to each specimen case. “This guide is a collection of the labels with some additions, arranged systematically so as to show the groups into which fishes are divided, and is illustrated by figures which are to a large extent taken from photographs of the specimens actually seen in the cases.”

Guide to the Gallery of Fishes in the Department of Zoology of the British Museum (Natural History), Cromwell Road, London, S.W.

Pp. v+209. (London: Printed for the Trustees, 1908.) Price 1s.

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W., W. Guide to the Gallery of Fishes in the Department of Zoology of the British Museum (Natural History), Cromwell Road, London, SW . Nature 78, 659 (1908) doi:10.1038/078659a0

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