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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



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



China - Pictorial, Descriptive, and Historical. With some account of Ava and the Burmese, Siam, and Anam - Julia Corner

1853 - Henry G. Bohn, London - First Edition
A compilation of various writings on China, with steel engraved map, and 85 black and white woodcut illustrations. Beautifully bound in modern pictorial cloth.

A large portion of the writing is from Julia Corner’s
History of China, other authors include John Davis and Wells Williams. 
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Price HK$ 3,000



1878 - C. Kegan Paul and Co., London - First Edition
Written in the form of an autobiography, the work gives much information of early British-Burmese relations. The author served as Chief Commissioner of British Burma from 1867 to 1871.

Two volumes, beautifully illustrated with ten colour chromolithographic plates, two engraved portraits, five engraved plates, one plate of Burmese Writing, two in-text engravings, and a large colour engraved folding ‘
Map of Burma and Adjacent Countries with Routes of Various Explorers by Lieut. General Albert Fytche’ [68.5 x 42 cm], and additional contemporary colour map of ‘Farther India’ tipped in at rear of volume II. 
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Price HK$ 15,000



A Thousand Miles on an Elephant in the Shan States - Holt S. Hallett

1890 - William Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh and London - First Edition
A superb example of this rather scarce and wonderfully illustrated account, ‘narrating Hallett’s travels in Thailand and the Shan States of Eastern Burma in 1876 to survey possible railway routes from Burma. He was accompanied by two missionaries, Rev. Dr. Josiah Nelson Cushing and Rev. Dr. Daniel McGilvary. Hallett was a lively observer of the local topography, people, trade and customs, and recorded his impressions not only in words but in detailed illustrations that are included in this book, together with route maps.’ [Patricia Herbert, Burmah]

With eight folding lithographed maps, 7 of which are in colour, together with sketches and diagrams throughout the text.
 
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Price HK$ 22,000



1947 - Longmans, London - Third Edition
The standard history of Burma, based on Burmese chronicles and on Western archival sources, focusing on everything from politics to dynastic events.’

Three works on Burmese History bound into a charmingly petite volume for Charles Booth, British diplomat who served in Burma three times between 1950 and 1978.

Harvey’s ‘
Outline of Burmese History’ contained in the compilation was once considered the definitive work on the subject. The educational tone set by the first work is carefully balanced with the wonderful and exhilarating account of Gribble’s near death trek across the country during the Japanese invasion in 1942, based primarily on the author’s diaries and letters that he was able to retain during his travels. 
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Price HK$ 1,800



The Game Birds of India, Burmah, and Ceylon - Allan Octavian Hume, Charles H. T. Marshall

1878 - Hume and Marshall, Calcutta
A superb and thus rare example of this three volume work, without restoration or loss, in the original gilt decorated bindings, and containing the complete set of 144 fine chromolithographic plates (no plate for the pea fowl was issued in volume I, which is explained in a note on page 92). All three illustrated title pages are also present.

Hume, ‘
the Father of Indian Ornithology’, put together this work using contributions and notes from a network of 200 or more correspondents. Hume delegated the task of getting the plates made to Marshall. The chromolithographs of the birds were drawn by W. Foster, E. Neale, (Miss) M. Herbert, Stanley Wilson and others and the plates were produced by F. Waller in London. Hume had sent specific notes on colours of soft parts and instructions to the artists. He was unsatisfied with many of the plates and included additional notes on the plates in the book. This book was started at the point when the government demoted Hume and only the need to finance the publication of this book prevented him from retiring from service. He had estimated that it would cost ₤ 4000 to publish it and he retired from service on 1 January 1882 after the publication. 
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Price HK$ 22,000



The Lacquer Lady - Fryniwyd Tennyson Jesse

1930 - The MacMillan Company, New York - First Edition
‘Fanny, white, draggled, and almost speechless, arrived to find a Mission House already frantic with alarm. No reliable news had escaped the Palace, but everyone in the kalā town knew that murder and perhaps wholesale massacre was abroad’

A lovely copy in an uncommonly bright dust jacket, the novel was inspired by the author’s trip to Burma, and based on the true story of King Thibaw’s downfall in 1870. Seen through the eyes of naive, yet destructive, Fanny Patterson, we witness the decay of an empire, as the king brings a crucial ultimatum to the British army, resulting in the occupation of Mandalay a fortnight later, with devastating consequences for all of Burma.
 
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Price HK$ 4,000



 
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