Anthurium: 19th Century Antique Hawaiian Flower Lithographs

Here is a selection of antique Anthurium prints. They are hand finished color lithographs! The stunning antique images illustrated botanical magazines during the 19th century which were issued by subscription. This group of old prints of Hawaiian flowers published Belgium 1869-1896.   Each old print measures about 10×13″. Click here to contact us.

How were these antique Anthurium lithographs made?

Issued on a periodic basis as nursery illustrations,  each and every color seen was applied by an individual key stoned limestone plate. This is an antique printing method, widely used during the 1800’s. A lost art today.  Lithographs were made from a special type of limestone. Sourced from Germany. The stone had the correct porosity to become a lithograph.

The illustration was transferred onto the smooth slab of limestone with a type of a greasy crayon.  It was drawn onto the smooth surface of the prepared limestone plate with fine detail. The plate with the Anthurium depiction was then emerged into nitric acid, leaving in relief what was under the greasy crayon. The greasy crayon then was wiped off.  This would be the plate for that one individual color. The process was repeated for every single color desired for the final illustration.

Chromolithography was a  painstaking craft. A process where perfection was key for the success of the publisher, the printer, the lithographer and ultimately the purchaser of the study. Either the image of the anthurium would be in focus once printed or distorted. Your profession as a lithographer depended on your skill to produce exact colors and details. After an illustration was perfectly printed, then water colors finishing could be added to enhance the botanical illustration.

Genus Anthurium has about 825 species.

Originally with over 1000 species the family of araceae, in 1983, the genus was further divided.  The colors of flowers are mostly in reds, whites and pinks, it is popular world wide in decorative flower arrangements and in gardens alike.  Historically the flower was a tropical forest under storey flower growing in tropical locations around the world.  It is also known as tail flower, flamingo flower & laceleaf.  If you are interested in learning more, there is a wonderful website dedicated to anthurium.  Learn all about Anthurium at the University of West Indies.

Hawaiian History Antique Lithographs & Engravings

Contact Anne!  She will provide you with exceptional service.  She enjoys working with customers and helping them pick the right combination of antique lithographs and hand colored engravings to complement your decor.  Phone 413-245-4197 Email:

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