Did you know the MRSN holds an exceptionally rare collection of cuboid-shaped volumes containing 2,600 life-size hand-coloured insect engravings?

The author of the work – Faunae insectorum germanicae initia oder Deutschlands Insecten – was the German physician, botanist, and entomologist Georg Wolfgang Franz Panzer (1755 – 1829).

Recognised as a model for any illustrated natural history work in the 18th and 19th century, it was published, in 109 parts, in Nuremberg, by the renowned publisher Felsecker, between 1796 and 1813.

L'opera "Faunae insectorum germanicae initia oder Deutschlands Insecten"di Georg Wolfgang Franz Panzer
photo by Fabrizio Longo, 2023
Dettaglio 1 delle illustrazioni di Jacob Sturm conservate presso il Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali
photo by Fabrizio Longo, 2023

Jacob Sturm (1771–1848) is the author of such magnificent illustrations.

Dettaglio 2 delle illustrazioni di Jacob Sturm conservate presso il Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali
photo by Fabrizio Longo, 2023

The volumes can be consulted at the MRSN Library.
Due to their brittleness, it is essential to take the utmost care when handling it.

The MRSN Library:

Provides support for scientific research, both for museum conservators and external users/guests (researchers, teachers, students, enthusiasts), as more than 19,000 monographs and over a thousand journals in the field of entomology, botany, zoology, earth sciences, etc. are available;

It allows books and magazines of a general interest for consultation (not for loan) to anyone interested.

Furthermore, the Zoological record, which provides details on articles in the field of zoology from 1864 to the present day, is available for reference on the library premises.

It is part of the National Library System (SBN), therefore:
- all the monographs can be found on SBN Librinlinea website (Piedmontese pole) and in OPAC SBN national catalogue;
- the list of journals can be found in the ACNP Italian catalogue.

* You can: - make an appointment with the librarian:; +39 011 4326331; - order PDF files online:;


In 1985 the Museum acquired, from the heirs of the Marquis Massimiliano Spinola, a fund of ancient books on the natural sciences and scientific journeys and explorations.

The following ones have thus become part of the MRSN Library:

  • 6,000 volumes, magazines, and miscellanies, printed between 1500 and 1850, including the works of some of the most renowned naturalists and entomologists both of the 18th and 19th centuries (Buffon, Linnaeus, Fabricius, Swammerdamm, Scopoli, Pallas, and Cuvier) and of the earlier ones (Aldrovandi and Gessner);
  • books on scientific journeys and explorations:
  • volumes edited by Theodor de Bry on the West Indies (late 1500s - early 1600s)
  • Description de l'Égypte (38 volumes, including 12 tables containing analysis of French scientists involved in Napoleon's expedition)
  • travel reports of Ramusio, Imperiale, Cook, La Condamine, and others.
  • complete collection of Curtis's Botanical Magazine, the world’s longest running continously published botanical periodical, featuring hand painted floral plates of outstanding beauty. Founded in 1787, it has been dealing with increasingly compelling issues such as biodiversity loss, food security and the impact of climate change since long ago.



Riccardo Meirone

- info: + 39 011 4326331

- appointment with the librarian for in-depth research assistance:


Franco Andreone

ph. +39 011 4326306


Silvia Accardo

ph. + 39 011 4325613


ph. +39 011 4326307

How many things can one learn about the natural world? Find it all out at the Regional Museum of Natural Sciences!