The Flying Fish, (Exocoetus evolvans)
Artist: Forbes, James
Plate ninety-two from the fourth volume of James Forbes' "Oriental Memoirs". In January 1784, Forbes(1749-1819)set sail for England halting briefly at Goa, Malabar and St. Helena. When sailing from St. Helena to Ascension another island, Forbes saw the 'most interesting scene of animated nature in the ocean, in the shoals of flying-fish abounding in particular lattitudes...This unfortunate inhabitant of the ocean was drawn of the natural size size and colours, from one which alighted on the deck of the ship, in its flight from its watery foes, and pursued by the sea-fowl hovering over the shoal from which it separated. When the oceanic flying-fish first emerges from the water, it is of the most beautiful silvery hues, softening the vivid shades of purple and blue.'