SPL Hand Coloured Rare Book Collection Featuring Norman R Bobins

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VALENTIA. George Annesley, (Viscount)
Voyages and Travels to India, Ceylon, The Red Sea, Abyssinia, and Egypt.

George Annesley, Viscount Valentia, was probably the first European traveller in Ethiopia in the nineteenth century. Valentia left England in June 1802 on the Minerva, for a Grand Tour of the East with Henry Salt. They were both antiquarians and avid collectors. Salt had earlier finished his training with the topographical draughtsman and diarist, Joseph Farington, and Valentia appointed him to be his official artist and secretary for the tour. The first volume deals with India and Sri Lanka - with sections on Benares, Calcutta, Lucknow, Ceylon, etc. - the second two volumes cover Abyssinia and the Red Sea, including much relating to Mocha. 'Salt's work is notable not only because it continues the picturesque tradition, but also because by collecting views from different areas of the East he helped to visually reinforce the distinction between East and West.

London, W. Bulmer & Co., 1809
Bobins III 1121.
London, W. Bulmer & Co., 1809

FIRST EDITION, large paper copy. 3 vols. Nine folding charts & plans & 60 engraved plates (mainly after drawings by Henry Salt). Large 4to. Contemporary morocco, richly gilt, spine gilt, with raised bands. [xiv], 496; iv, 520; viii, 506, [iv], [48](versos blank)pp.One of only 50 copies printed on large paper. Lord Valentia (later Earl of Mountnorris) set out from England in June 1802, with Henry Salt as his draughtsman and secretary. As well as surveying the east coast of Africa and investigating the possibilities of trade with Abyssinia and its neighbours, the mission hoped to conclude an alliance by giving England a port in the Red Sea, in case France, under Napoleon, should seize Egypt. Salt provided some of the text for Valentia. Uncoloured plates - therefore, they are not listed.