'The book Zoological Illustrations, describes the original figures and descriptions of New, Rare, or Interesting Animals, Selected Chiefly from the Classes of Ornithology, Entomology, and Conchology, and Arranged on the Principles of Cuvier and Other Modern Zoologists by William Swainson, F.R.S., F.L.S., member of the Wernerian Society of Edinburgh.'
'The termination of the first volume of the Zoological Illustrations is accomplished, and its contents will not only enable our readers to discern the nature of the work, but likewise to form a judgement, on that degree of improvement which we have introduced since its first publication, and they may safely rely on the continuation being in no respect inferior.
In commencing a work of this nature, we have had two principal objects in view: the diffusion of original observations, which, while they might further the ends of science, would also be interesting to the general reader; and that of discouraging the publication of distorted figures copied from old authors, by accustoming the public eye to original designs and correct representations of natural objects. How far we may have succeeded in this latter object, remains to be judged by others; we are however satisfied with having made the attempt, and we hope that abler pencils than our own, may engage in the prosecution of this most desirable object; for it is only by the publication of original matter, that a check can be given to the increasing number of compilations and multiplied copies of "ill-shaped" figures, by which error is perpetuated, and science retarded.
The only original work that has appeared in this country similar to our own, is the Zoological Miscellany by Dr. Leach, which, as it was discontinued after the third volume, it may be presumed was unsuccessful: although little can be said of many of the figures in the early volumes, those in the latter are much to be praised, and the whole are original; the descriptions also abound with details highly interesting to the scientific world, for which indeed the learned author principally intended it; nevertheless it is a question, whether science in the end would not have been equally, and perhaps more advanced, had this work been more adapted to general readers. Instruction in these days of refinement must be made easy, palatable, and enticing; the eye must be pleased, while the understanding is improved, and Wisdom in her simple dignified garb will often be deserted for Ignorance, decked out in the glittering trappings of Folly.'