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A Series of Figures Shewing all the motions in the Manual and Platoon Exercises
London: William Clowes, 1828. Octavo, letterpress and 26 plates, some offsetting as common; an appealing copy in contemporary red quarter roan, rubbed. Mitchell on military drill. Major Mitchell's famous book on military exercises and musketry drills with its series of marvellous lithographic plates.Sir Thomas Livingstone Mitchell, explorer and Surveyor-General in New South Wales, arrived in Sydney in 1827, but this remarkable little book dates from the period immediately before he left England. Mitchell had seen action in the Peninsula War, and was for some years employed by Sir George Murray to produce plans of the major battlefields. However, the early 1820s was a fallow period for Mitchell, who was placed on half pay in 1826: the distinct lack of opportunities for the ambitious young man was what led him to lobby for appointment in New South Wales.This interesting work was clearly one of the ways in which he supplemented his income, and certainly shows Mitchell's undoubted ability with preparing illustrations for publication, as the series of drills included here are very neatly done. An 1825 edition is the earliest recorded, and although Ferguson noted only an 1830 edition, this work was clearly widely used as there was - at least - other editions in 1827 and 1828 (as here). Any copy is now quite scarce on the market.
      [Bookseller: Hordern House Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-03-30           Check availability:      Biblio    

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