Burchell, William J.
Travels in the Interior of Southern Africa.
Seller ID: 2600S
London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, & Brown, 1822 and 1824. First edition, in two volumes (pp. viii, 582; 648, indexes). Quarto (28 cm) in contemporary half leather over textured publisher’s cloth, gilt titles, decorations, speckled edges. Complete with a new map and coloured engravings with tissue guards as called for. “The most valuable and accurate work published on South Africa up to the first quarter of the nineteenth century, and embracing a description of a large part of the Cape Colony and Bechuanaland at this period.” Burchell’s explorations which extended over four years produced “important collections of the flora, fauna, and curiosities of the country, together with a large number of drawings…. The illustrations in the volumes are characterised by great beauty and accuracy… the coloured plates are particularly admired, and the drawings from which they were engraved were prepared with great care by the artist…. The work is now extremely scarce, many copies having been broken up in the middle of the nineteenth century for the plates” (Mendelssohn I, 224). We were able to locate but one copy in the current market. With the crest of the [Craig] Laurie family of Red Castle, Scotland. This copy last changed hands in the 1950’s at a Port Elizabeth sale and has until now remained, though moved on to Canada, with the same family. Quite a handsome copy of this important and scarce work.
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