The Cultivation and Harvesting of Tuna

Osservazioni pratiche intorno la pesca, corso, e cammino de' tonni. In opposizione a quanto scrisse su tal soggetto l'avvocato dr Don Francesco Paola Avolio. con delle Istruzioni che riguardano detta Pesca pel buon Regolamento delle Tonnare, con una relazione di tuttle quelle di corso, e di ritorno in questo Regno, e delli Proprietari attuali.

In Messina: Presso la Società tipografica, 1816. Item #1101

8vo.  200 x 140 mm., 8 x 5 ½ inches.  [xvi], xiii, 164 pp.  Illustrated with a portrait of dedicatee, with one large folding engraved plate bound in.  Bound in original decorated paste paper wrappers, showing a bit of wear at the corners and a stain on the upper wrapper; printed paper label on spine.  A very good copy in original condition.

First edition of this detailed account of the tuna fisheries of Sicily by d'Amico, proprietor of the tuna fisheries of San Giorgio di Patti. Written in response to Avolio's work on the same subject, but with the advantage of first-hand knowledge, d'Amico attempts to bring order into the tuna fishing concessions in Sicily. His treatise is endorsed at the beginning by Gaetano, who had written Arcadian verse on the subject with extensive footnotes outlining the natural history, etc. of tuna.

D'Amico divides his treatise into three parts. In the first part he writes on tuna in general, and its migration routes in particular, and clarifies appropriations, cessations, duties, taxable income and other obligations regarding the industry, in opposition to Avolio's treatise. The second part discusses the distances between individual tuna fisheries, and the legal basis of fishing restrictions in the vicinity of other tuna fisheries. The final part consists of a detailed account of all the tuna fisheries on the Sicilian coast, giving information on history, legal documentation of licenses, ownership, tuna 'harvest', tuna fishing season etc. Again, he clearly corrects some of Aviolo's statements.

Overall, a very detailed survey of the Sicilian tuna trap fisheries (tonnara), where an elaborate maze of nets are employed to capture and corral bluefin tuna during the spawning season, a form of fishing that has been carried out for over a thousand years and clearly was the mainstay of the local economy.

Paleari Henssler (1998), Bibliografia Latino-Italiana di Gastronomia, p. 233.  OCLC lists just one copy at Harvard; for more information see the historical chapters in S. Longo, Global Sushi, a socio-ecological analysis of the Sicilian Bluefin tuna fishery, 2009, pp. 88-150. 

The above description was written by Susanne Schultz-Falster.








Price: $3,000.00

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