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A Voyage Round the World, In the Years MDCCXL, I, II, III, IV. - George Anson, Richard Walter

1748 - Printed for the Author, London - First Edition
A finely bound ‘Royal Paper’ copy of the this beautifully illustrated work which ‘has long occupied a distinguished position as a masterpiece of descriptive travel’ (Hill), and ‘a model of what such literature should be’ (Cox).

Containing forty two copper-engraved maps, charts, views, and coastal profiles, all but one folding, including views of Brazilian harbours and cities, Acapulco, Tenian, Port St. Julian, Magellan’s Straits, the Bay of Manila, Saipan, Lama, Lantau, Chinese Junks, and others, and large folding maps of South America, the Philippines, and the Pacific Ocean, as well as the twelve page subscriber list, and the two page instructions to the binder.

England, at war with Spain in 1739, equipped eight ships under the command of George Anson to harass the Spaniards on the western coast of South America, for the purpose of cutting off Spanish supplies of wealth from the Pacific area. Seven ships were lost and out of 900 men, 600 perished. As usual scurvy took an appalling toll.

The Spanish fleet sent out to oppose the British ran into storms; provisions ran out and many ships were wrecked. Thus the primary object of the expedition was not attained, however Anson continued taking prizes off the Pacific coast during 1741-42, and in June 1743, near the Philippines he captured the Spanish galleon
Nostra Seigniora de Cabadonga and its treasure of £400,000 sterling, which allowed Anson and the surviving members of his crew to reach England much the richer. 
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Price HK$ 59,000



The Chinese Drama - From the Earliest Times until To-Day - Lewis Charles Arlington, H. A. Giles, Mei Lan-fang

1966 - Benjamin Blom, New York - Third Printing
‘A Panoramic Study of the Art in China, tracing its Origin and describing its Actors (in both Male and Female roles): their Costumes and Make-up, Superstitions and Stage Slang: the accompanying Music and Musical Instruments: concluding with Synopses of Thirty Chinese Plays.’

First published in 1930, this reproduction contains all 115 original plates and black and white illustrations, and is also rather difficult to obtain.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



Days and Nights of Shikar - Mrs. W. W. Baillie

1921 - John Lane, London and New York - First Edition
‘Mrs Baillie seems to have been an incurable big-game hunter. She was married to a clergyman stationed in the Deccan; from there (rarely accompanied by the gentle padre) she made expeditions as far afield as Chamba in the Himalaya and Dharwar towards the south, in search of trophies to bring home to England.

‘This book is less bloodthirsty, than many; the worst moments in it are no concerned with the poor animals’ appointment with death, but with the author's own, which she managed to postpone twice at the very last minute.

‘The first time was on a night shoot from Bilaspur, near Simla. She had placed a goat’s carcass as a decoy under the hammock; unfortunately, just as an obliging tiger was approaching, the hammock string snapped and bowled Mrs Baillie into the mess below. Meanwhile the tiger fled away.

‘A closer shave involved a black bear, who caught our heroine as she fell from a rock, first chewing her leg and then making off with her head–for which it luckily mistook her sola topi, The leg healed after five weeks in hospital, and nothing daunted, Mrs Baillie lived to shoot another day.’ – Jane Robinson,
Wayward Women. 
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Price HK$ 900



Typical Photographs of Burma – Burmese Life and Scenes - Felice Beato

Circa 1920 - Rowe & Co. Ltd., Rangoon
A nice tourist album produced for the luxury department store Rowe & Co., containing 111 photographs, each numbered and indexed. The majority of photographs have been accredited to Felice Beato, considered one of the first war photographers and well known for his work in Burma where he had his own studio.

Rowe & Co. whose beautiful building can be seen in the second photograph, was one of the British colonial emporia or department stores in Rangoon (as was Whiteaway, Laidlaw in Calcutta, Spencer's in Madras, Cargill's in Colombo and Lane, Crawford was in Hong Kong ). Established in 1866 as a drapers and general merchants by Mr RV Rowe, the Company published a 300-page illustrated catalogue four times annually, exhibiting wares from its various departments; of course, ladies' and gentlemen's outfitters, drapery, millinery, crockery & glassware, trunks, cutlery, watches & clocks, saddlery amongst others.
 
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Price HK$ 2,900



Wanderings in the Great Forests of Borneo - Odoardo Beccari, F. H. H. Guillemard (editor)

1904 - Archibald Constable & Co Ltd, London - First Edition in English
An exceptionally clean and sharp copy of this important work by one of the great botanical explorers and naturalists of the nineteenth century, containing three folding maps and illustrated throughout with 61 black and white photographs, sketches and diagrams.

Odoardo Beccari (1843-1920), an orphan from Florence, studied at the universities in Pisa and Bologna, and after graduating spent a few months at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, where he met Charles Darwin, William and Joseph Hooker, and James Brooke, the first Rajah of Sarawak. The latter connection lead to him spending three years from 1865 to 1868 undertaking research in Sarawak, Brunei and other islands off present-day Malaysia and New Guinea. He made a second trip to New Guinea, this time with ornithologist Luigi Maria d'Albertis, in 1872, collecting many zoological specimens, especially birds of paradise, and ethnographic materials.
 
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Price HK$ 8,500



1897 - F. J. Bright & Son / Simpkin, Bournemouth / London - First Edition
A beautiful copy of this large and detailed work, mostly unopened, scarce in any condition.

Essentially the first ‘guidebook’ to Burma, profusely illustrated throughout with 68 black and white plates many from photographs by Felice Beato, together with a large folding colour map in the pocket at the rear, and 19 further maps and plans, three of which are folding.

George W. Bird was an educational service official with twenty years residence in Burma. This work is arranged in two parts: the first giving a general introduction to Burma, and the second describing twenty-four ‘routes’ or excursion tours throughout Burma with a description of the main sights and practical travel advice - ‘
the best way to get expeditiously to May Myo from Mandalay is to ride. With two ponies, and a bullock-cart for servants and kit, the journey up can be comfortably made in two days’. 
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Price HK$ 22,000



The Yangtze Valley and Beyond - Mrs J. F. (Isabella L. Bird) Bishop

1900 - G.P. Putnam's Sons, New York - First American Edition (First English Edition 1889)
A lovely set of the two volume American first edition, describing the remarkable journey through China in 1896-1897 by that intrepid lady traveller Isabella Bird, first female member of the Royal Geographical Society and doyenne of all women travel writers. A a far handsomer edition than the single volume published a year earlier in the London, with 116 illustrations and a folding colour map.

‘Many of the areas she explored and carefully described were almost unknown to European visitors and had not been mentioned in any earlier English publications. Based on journal letters and the diary written during her journey, and it is generously illustrated with photographs and Chinese drawings. Bishop's work was warmly received in England and praised especially for the information included on agriculture and industry. The Geographical Journal heralded the work as 'undoubtedly one of the most important contributions to English literature on that country'. It remains a key source for late nineteenth-century British perceptions of China.’ -–
Cambridge University Press. 
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Price HK$ 8,000



Peking Und Umgebung - Boy-Ed

1907 - Verlag der Brigade-Zeitung, Tientsin
Canvassed backed colour map of Peking, 71 x 80 cm. Text in German and Chinese.

With original title, additional booksellers stamp and contemporary owner’s name to front covers

This map was also used for the photographic work of the same name published in 1906 by the printing office of the German occupation forces. According to Wittockiana very little is known about the author Boy-ed, who was first lieutenant and headed the German detachment of howitzers in Peking during the Boxer rebellion.
 
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Price HK$ 6,000



 
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