Print size: 26 1/4" x 39 1/4"; image size: 11 1/2" x 18 1/2"
Princeton Audubon Limited Edition - produced 1985
Audubon made a pastel drawing of a male house wren when he and his wife were in Pennsylvania in 1812. Later, he made use of this work to produce the present composition showing the wren nest in a felt hat. His penciled outline of the tree limb was completed for the engraving by Robert Havell, Jr.
Audubon wrote of his original painting: "I knew of one [nest] in the pocket of an old broken-down carriage, and many in such an old hat as you see represented in the plate...I hope you will...look at the little creatures anxiously peeping out or hanging to the side of the hat, to meet their mother; which has just arrived with a spider, whilst the male is on the lookout, ready to interpose should any intruder come near."
Wrens are great scolders, and this species speaks with a deep, grating chatter. Its bulling and tempestuous song is a series of short notes poured out in a rapid burst that suddenly rises and then falls.
Princeton Audubon prints are direct-camera facsimile lithographs of the Robert Havell Jr. (1793-1878) engravings for The Birds of America (1827-38). Princeton's Double elephant Folio prints are issued in limited editions of 500 or 1500 prints. All are numbered and have a seal in the bottom margin to demonstrate their authenticity.
Printed on heavy Mohawk paper that is recommended by the Library of Congress for archives, the paper is specially toned to match the average paper color of the antique originals.