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Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt & - ROBERTS David - 1842. 
1842 - ROBERTS, David. The Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt, & Nubia". Volume 3. London: F.G. Moon, 1849. Large folio (18 by 24-1/2 inches), contemporary three-quarter brown morocco, elaborately gilt-decorated spine, raised bands, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. $12,500.First edition of Volume III (Idumea) of one of the greatest lithographic works ever printed, complete with lithographed title page and 34 (of 36) beautiful tinted lithographic plates in excellent condition featuring the fabulous ruins at Petra, the Convent of St. Catherine at Mount Sinai, Mount Horeb and Suez, all finely hand-colored. Very handsomely bound in contemporary morocco-gilt by Riviere.The mysteries of Egypt and the Middle East were first revealed to inquiring Western minds through David Roberts' folio-sized Holy Land and his subsequent Egypt & Nubia. Originally issued in three volumes from 1842 to 1849, the monumental Holy Land contained 123 tinted lithographs produced from Roberts' magnificent on-site drawings of temples, land- and cityscapes, and other sights throughout the Holy Land. Roberts was the first Westerner to be granted permission to enter whichever sacred mosque or monument he desired, and his images of these holy places established what many people even today envision as the aura of Egypt and the Holy Land. He departed on his 11-month journey in August 1838, initially traveling to Alexandria. In February 1839, he set out for the Holy Land, stopping on the way at Suez, Mount Sinai, and Petra. He then visited Gaza and Jerusalem and spent the remaining months of his journey visiting biblical sites. "Roberts' Holy Land has a worldwide reputation; nothing of a similar character has ever been produced that can bear a comparison with it" (Ran, 6). "These prints are of excellence unsurpassed in Europe". The firm of Day and Haghe raised lithography to perhaps the highest point it ever attained" (Abbey). The work was issued in three states: tinted, tinted proof, and hand-colored and mounted on card. The present copy has been finely hand-colored, but the half-page plates are printed on the same page as the text, rather than on separate sheets, and none of the plates are mounted, indicating that this volume was finely colored at a later time. Without one half-page plate, "[Ancient Egyptian] Temple on Gebel Garabe," accompanying text, and following full-page plate, "[Principal Court of the] Convent of St. Catherine" (other Convent of St. Catherine illustrations are present). Without engraved map of the author's routes. See Abbey Travel 385; Tooley 401. Plates and text fine, hand-coloring vivid and skillfully executed. Handsome Riviere morocco-gilt binding lightly rubbed at extremities, with a bit of discoloration to the front cloth cover. An excellent copy of this lovely illustrated folio. [Attributes: First Edition; Soft Cover]
[Bookseller: Bauman Rare Books]
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