Item 688 - Yellow Wagtail

Open original Digital object

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Yellow Wagtail

General material designation

Parallel title

Western Yellow Wagtail

Other title information

Motacilla flava (flavissima)

Title statements of responsibility

Title notes

  • Source of title proper: Caption title.
  • Parallel titles and other title information: Title from Mousley: Motacilla Flavia rayi

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CA RBD MSG BW002-688

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  • undated (Creation)
    Paillou, Peter, approximately 1720-approximately 1790

Physical description area

Physical description

1 watercolour painting ; 56 x 39 cm + 1 leaf

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Name of creator

(approximately 1720-approximately 1790)

Biographical history

Peter Paillou was born in London into a Huguenot family and was recognised in his own time as an eminent ‘bird painter’. In 1744 he began to paint for Taylor White and worked for him for almost thirty years, painting chiefly birds and mammals. He painted as well for Robert More, Joseph Banks, and for the Welsh naturalist Thomas Pennant. Many of his paintings of birds were used as the basis for book illustrations, often engraved by his colleague and fellow Huguenot, Peter Mazell. Paillou was elected to the Society of Artists and in 1763 he exhibited ‘A Piece of Birds, in Watercolours; the Hen of the Wood and Cock of the Red Game’. In 1778, to considerable approval, he also showed a picture of ‘A Horned Owl from Peru’, completely made from feathers.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Drawing of a Western Yellow Wagtail from a 18th century specimen [modern geographical distribution: Europe, Asia, and Africa.] Attributed to Peter Paillou.

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General note

Manuscript note on front of drawing: Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla Flavia rayi)

General note

General note

Scientific name: Motacilla flava (flavissima)

Accompanying material

With manuscript text on accompanying leaf.

Accompanying material

Transcription of manuscript note on accompanying leaf: Aves Passeres Motacila

  1. Flava
    12 Motacilla pectore abdomineq[ue] flavo.
    Rectricibus duabus lateralibus dimidiato
    oblique albis L.S.N. ed. nov. p. 331.
    Motacilla verna. Brisson av. 3 p 468
    Habitat in Europa. uti praecedens sed magis
    The yellow or summer Waterwagtail
    This Linaeus confounds with the Grey one
    next described.

Accompanying material

Translation of manuscript note on accompanying leaf: Aves Passeres Motacila

  1. Flava
    12 Motacilla with a golden-yellow breast and abdomen,
    and two flight feathers on the sides of the tail that are half
    white at an angle. L.S.N. ed. nov. p. 331.
    Motacilla verna. Brisson av. 3 p 468
    It lives in Europe, where the previous bird lives, but more so
    in the forest.
    The yellow or summer Waterwagtail
    This Lin[n]aeus confounds with the Grey one
    next described.

Alternative identifier(s)

Volume number

Birds Volume 11, Painting 33

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  • Volume: Birds v.11 (of 16)