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Catalogue of the Leonard Gow Collection of Chinese Porcelain - Robert Lockhart Hobson

1931 - Privately Printed by George W. Jones at The Sign of The Dolphin in Gough Square, London - First Edition, Number 192 of 300 copies.
First and only edition of this lavish work, signed by Leonard Gow, ‘with one hundred and fifty pages of descriptive letterpress, printed on English hand-made paper.’ and ‘with one hundred and forty-four illustrations in colour, and eighty-nine illustrations in monochrome. The whole have been reproduced direct from the Porcelain. 
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Price HK$ 19,000



Illustrations of the Literature and Religion of the Buddhists - Brian Houghton Hodgson

1841 - Self-published – Bound at the Baptist Mission Press, Serampore - First Edition in Book Form
Hodgson’s rare and important work – the first collected edition of papers on the literature and religion of Buddhism – fifteen in total, originally published in Transactions and Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal and London, and which for the first time revealed to the West the Sanskrit literature of northern, or Mahayana, Buddhism, which had been preserved in Nepal. For the collection Hodgson adds a preface and many footnotes.

Features two folding lithographed alphabet tables. Interestingly, Hodgson published this book in Serampore, at the time a Danish colony, it would have been printed at the former Serampore Mission Press, set up by the Baptist missionary William Carey, which closed in 1837 merging with the Baptist Mission Press, where this copy was also bound (see small bookplate to front pastedown).

Hodgson later reprinted 12 of the 15 papers as part one of
Essays on the Languages, Literature and Religion of Nepal and Tibet (1874), the second part being on the tribes and geography of Nepal and Tibet, and in 1880 he published Miscellaneous Essays Relating to Indian Subjects (2 volumes, 1880), containing his papers on Indian languages and ethnology. 
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Price HK$ 16,500



Grandeur et Suprematie de Peking - Alphonse Hubrecht

1928 - Imprimerie des Lazaristes du Pé-t'ang, Peking - First and Limited Edition number XXIII of 50 ‘Exemplaires de Grand Luxe’ printed on ‘Papier de Grand Luxe’
A stunningly silk bound copy of this wonderful work, illustrated with seventy full page half-tone photographic plates [with 140 photographs], 560 woodblock in-text engravings, ten full page woodblock plates, a full page plan comparing Peking through the ages, woodblock initials incorporating monuments of Peking, and 220 zincographic engravings of Chinese art [Zincography was a planographic printing process that used zinc plates].

This copy, in a variant binding of orange pictorial silk, is also one of a hundred copies that contained an additional eight full page hand water-coloured woodblock prints of nine porcelain works from the Louvre Museum [Opposite pages 460, 452, 412 [2], 404, 188, 180, 124, 116], water-coloured illustrated limitation page and extra illustrated title page, thirty water-coloured large initials with floral decoration.

This comprehensive work is divided in two parts, one historical, one descriptive. The historical part begins with the Mongol Empire [13th to 14th Century] and ends at the first decades of the Republic of China [1912]. The descriptive part describes the palaces, temples, Imperial Tombs, and also family life in China, social life, beliefs, etc.’ [
Bibliotheca Wittockiana 123] 
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Price HK$ 38,000



1857 to 1858
The original hand written journal of Captain Robert Jenkins, during his time as Commander of HMS Actaeon for the year 1857 and HMS Comus in 1857, both ships active off the coast of China, mostly around Canton. Included is a hand drawn and water coloured sketch of Chinese villagers being forced to kowtow to the Union Jack. Finely bound in contemporary black calf and brass locks.

HMS Actaeon was commissioned in 1857 to serve as a survey vessel off the coast of China, under the command of Captain William Thornton Bate. She was present at the bombardment of Canton in 1857,where Bate was shot and killed on 29th. December. Captain Robert Jenkins took over the command of the ship and his journal refers to the bombardment of Canton, surveying factories, disputes over land between British and Chinese merchants. It also covers skirmishes with armed junks and defence of the Barrier. Locations include Hong Kong ,Canton, Macao and Amoy.

According to the Journal it appears that Jenkins was wounded seriously on June 30th 1858, and on September 16th ‘Joined Commander J Ward, [vice?] Captain R Jenkins discharged to Half Pay’, September 18th ‘I went to Shanghai with Commander Ward’, from wence Jenkins travelled to Hong Kong, Singapore, Penang, Galli, Aden, Alexandria, Malta, Gibralter, Falmouth, arriving in Southampton 19th November, one month after leaving Shanghai.

(29 x 23.5 cm) pp. 46 [1st January to 31st December 1857 as Commander of HMS Comus] 10 [Summary of year 1857 as Commander of HMS Comus] 8 [January 1-19th, last days as Commander of HMS Comus] 92 [January 20th to 19th November as Commander of HMS Actaeon] [4] 8 [Summary of year 1857 as Commander of HMS Actaeon] 47 blank pages. Paper watermarked ‘1852’ ‘Fellows’.
 
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Price HK$ 130,000



The Lacquer Lady - Fryniwyd Tennyson Jesse

1930 - The MacMillan Company, New York - First Edition
‘Fanny, white, draggled, and almost speechless, arrived to find a Mission House already frantic with alarm. No reliable news had escaped the Palace, but everyone in the kalā town knew that murder and perhaps wholesale massacre was abroad’

A lovely copy in an uncommonly bright dust jacket, the novel was inspired by the author’s trip to Burma, and based on the true story of King Thibaw’s downfall in 1870. Seen through the eyes of naive, yet destructive, Fanny Patterson, we witness the decay of an empire, as the king brings a crucial ultimatum to the British army, resulting in the occupation of Mandalay a fortnight later, with devastating consequences for all of Burma.
 
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Price HK$ 4,000



I Married Adventure - Osa Johnson

1940 - J. B. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia - First Edition
‘”We're going round the world, Osa!” – Heady stuff for a dainty little Kansas girl, who had married at sixteen a handsome film photographer just back from the exotic South Seas. Osa Johnson would have been quite happy to keep home and settle down – she had never been further than thirty miles from the house she was born – but Martin Johnson and their whirlwind romance so bowled her over that all she could answer was “Well -– all right, dear”.'  – Jane Robinson, Wayward Women.

A lovely copy in the fantastic Zebra print boards. The real life travel exploits of husband and wife adventurers Martin and Osa Johnson, this is a lively memoir relaying their journeys from Borneo, to Kenya and the Congo.

A best seller when it first appeared in 1940, its wonderful observations of nature and heart-stopping narrative are accompanied by scores of striking photographs of the Johnsons’ exotic destinations.
 
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Price HK$ 2,500



Tibetan Trek - with - Salween - Ronald Kaulback

1934 - Hodder & Stoughton, London - First Edition, Second State (paper jacket)
‘An explorer in the old-fashioned mould of buccaneering Englishmen who roamed the blank spaces of the map’ – The Times.

Two first editions of Kaulback’s acclaimed accounts of travel and adventure in Tibet.

‘Ronald Kaulback came down from Cambridge having skilfully avoided reading too many books, or attending too many lectures. He had no very clear idea of what he wanted to do in life, and so tagged on to an expedition led by F. Kingdom-Ward whose introduction to
Tibetan Trek is a wonderful introduction to Kaulback himself’.

Kaulback followed this with an eighteen months' expedition in south eastern Tibet searching for the source of the Salween, the black river of Tibet. With one other Englishman and three faithful (and quite enchanting) natives and a good stock of supplies, he collected specimens of insect life, distributed medical care to the very friendly residents and gives a record of their daily progress. Across 3,000 miles of unexplored territory, there were many oddities to be seen, minor discomforts rather than major calamities, to be endured, and plenty of good anecdotes, which he describes in
Salween.

Both works profusely illustrated with black and white photographs and numerous maps. Both in their rare bright illustrated dust jackets.
 
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The Expedition to Borneo of H.M.S. Dido - Captain the Hon. Henry Keppel

1847 - Chapman and Hall, London - Third Edition
Keppel and Brooke, a friendship that united two of the most accomplished, unorthodox, and tactically brilliant mariners to command, or in Brooke’s case ‘commandeer’ the British navy around the ‘pirate’ infested waters of Borneo in the mid 19th century.

A finely bound two volumes set, profusely illustrated with eight tinted lithographic plates, two monochrome lithographic plates, five folding engraved maps and plans, and a folding table of ‘
Suggestions for Accelerating the Communication between Great Britain and China’. Published a year after the first but with a large additional appendix, many revisions, and an ‘additional chapter, comprising recent intelligence, by Walter K. Kelly’. The third edition also added the tinted lithographic plate of ‘Mr. Brook’s First Residence at Sarawak’ (volume I, opposite page 41, which replaced the plate ‘Jungle Near Santobong’ found in the first two editions).

The first volume concerns itself with Brooke's exploits in Sarawak from 1838-42, prior to his meeting with Keppel. Brooke attempted to open Borneo for foreign trade and tried to pacify the tribes. As a reward for success in the latter endeavour, he was given his title in 1841. Volume two recounts the military exploits of Brooke, Keppel, and Sir Edward Belcher, who occasionally came to Keppel's aid; gives a geographical overview of Borneo; and includes accounts of the Dyaks, the aboriginal Bornean tribes.
 
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Price HK$ 5,500



 
Results 41 - 48 of 128 results