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2020-12-11 06:32:03
LAYARD, Austen H.
Discoveries in the Ruins of Nineveh and Babylon; With Travels in Armenia, Kurdistan and the Desert: Being the Result of a Second Expedition undertaken for the British Museum.
London: John Murray, 1853. London: John Murray,, 1853. Octavo. Original brown fine-ribbed polished cloth, title gilt to spine, intricate decoration of the Great Winged Bull across the spine and both boards in blind, red-brown surface-paper endpapers, binder's ticket (Remnant and Edmonds) to rear pastedown. Engraved folding frontispiece and 4 similar plates (all but one folding) depicting plans and elevations, one plate of inscriptions, 8 tinted lithographic plates, 2 engraved folding maps to rear, profuse wood-engraved illustrations to the text, several full-page. Hinges ever so slightly tender, some light foxing, folding map facing p. 67 torn (without loss), slight chipping and discolouration without loss to plate facing p. 115, minor tear to first folding map at rear. A very good copy. First edition, in the original decorated cloth, surely one of the most attractive publisher's bindings of the 19th century. Layard's important second British Museum expedition "yielded further important trophies and discoveries, including the cuneiform library of Sennacherib's grandson Ashurbanipal, on which most modern knowledge of Assyrian culture is founded" (ODNB). "Apart from the archaeological value of his work in identifying Kouyunjik as the site of Nineveh, and in providing a great mass of materials for scholars to work upon … Layard's [accounts] are among the best written books of travel in the language" (Encyclopaedia Britannica). Abbey Travel 364; Atabey 687; Blackmer 969.
Bookseller: Peter Harrington [United Kingdom]
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