every age, pioneers pushed beyond their own boundaries to chart
new lands and observe exotic plants, animals, and peoples. Although
nations undertook the great voyages of exploration primarily to
expand their territories, scientific and artistic discoveries also
abounded. Voyagers returned with specimens from the natural world,
which scholars cataloged and organized. Natural history museums
around the world now house the specimens they collected and recorded.
and artists were essential partners in these expeditions, collaborating
with writers and printers to record and depict the expanding world
in lavishly illustrated volumes of great beauty. Their work remains
of unparalleled value to scientists, historians, and many others.