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The 10 Rarest Books in the World

By Becky Ferreira Apr 26, 2013

6 of 11

The Birds of America

In 1820, the legendary naturalist John James Audubon resolved to draw every avian species in North America. The result is the intricately beautiful collection of paintings called The Birds of America, which was delivered to subscribers one painting at a time between 1827 and 1838. The complete series even includes several birds that are now extinct, such as the Passenger Pigeon, the Great Auk, and the Carolina Parakeet. Individual pages of the book sell for thousands of dollars each, and the complete collection was last sold in 2012, for $8 million. Pictured here is Audubon's gorgeous rendering of the American flamingo.

Tags: shakespeare, books, slideshows, collections, books-and-comics, antiques

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About the Author
Becky Ferreira

Becky Ferreira is a writer, performer, and raptor based in New York.

Wanna contact a writer or editor? Email contribute@sparknotes.com.

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