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Travels and Discoveries of North and Central Africa. Being a journal of an expedition undertaken under the auspices of H.B.M.'s Government, in the years 1849-1855.
London: Longman, Brown, Green, Longmans, & Roberts, 1857-8. - 5 volumes, octavo (222 x 137 mm). Original dark green straight-grain cloth, titles to spines gilt, decorated panels to boards in blind, cream endpapers in Volumes I, II, and III, red-brown endpapers with advertisements in Volumes IV and V. Contemporary ownership inscription of George H. Witherle, of Castine in Maine, to front free endpaper in each volume. Spines a little darkened and gently cocked, spine ends and corners lightly bumped, both inner hinges in Volumes I, IV, and V as well as the rear inner hinge in Volumes II and III delicately restored. 61 lithographic plates, all tinted apart from one, drawn by J. M. Bernatz, after sketches by Dr Barth, and printed by Hanhart, numerous woodcuts in text, and 15 partially coloured folding maps engraved by Edward Weller. First editions throughout and unusual thus. Barth studied archaeology, science, and law at the University of Berlin, as well as geography under Carl, graduating in 1844. In 1845, he set out on a journey to Tunisia and Libya, returning to Europe two years later by way of the Sinai Peninsula, travelling through Palestine, Syria, Turkey, and Greece. 'In 1849, on the recommendation of Bunsen and Ritter, and the Prussian ambassador in London, Barth was appointed to an expedition under the direction of the British explorer James Richardson, who had been selected by the British government to open up commercial relationships with the sub-Saharan states of North Africa' (Howgego). During this extraordinary five-year expedition, Barth explored large parts of the region, including the Libyan desert, the Sahara, and the Sudan, as well as becoming 'the first European to penetrate Agades officially' (Carr, The Nomad's Path, p. 30). The resulting five-volume work is one of the key works on North and Central Africa written during the 19th century, providing extensive information on the different languages, traditions, religious practices, and political institutions of the region. Abbey Travel 274; Gay 207; Howgego IV B18; Ibrahim-Hilmy I p. 53. [Attributes: First Edition]
      [Bookseller: Peter Harrington. ABA member]
Last Found On: 2014-12-10           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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