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Typical Photographs of Burma – Burmese Life and Scenes -

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



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



Journal of an Embassy from the Governor-General of India to the Courts of Siam and Cochin China - John Crawfurd

1830 - Henry Colburn and Richard Bentley, London - Second Edition
Crawfurd’s intelligent and comprehensive account of his mission to Siam and Vietnam, volume one being his narrative of the mission itself, whilst volume two describes the people, places, customs, manners and other observations made during that time. In original boards and spine, full margins and partially unopened.

‘In 1821 Crawfurd, then based in Calcutta, was appointed to head a mission to Siam and Vietnam, with the primary objective of opening up commerce. He made little headway with the suspicious local authorities and achieved no political and little commercial advantage, despite instructions to seek trade on liberal terms without demanding the exclusive privileges customary in the past. But the official report, which he submitted on his return to Calcutta in December 1822, provided invaluable information.’

Profusely illustrated throughout, with engraved maps, plates, and woodcuts.
 
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Price HK$ 29,000



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



The Game Animals of India, Burma, Malaya, and Tibet. - R. Lydekker, J. G. Dollman

1924 - Rowland Ward, London - Second and Best Edition Revised by J. G. Dollman
The definitive work on the big game species of South Asia, Lydekker describes in detail the natural history and habitat of game types. He also includes numerous sporting vignettes and observations culled from the writings of sportsmen of the era.

Nine full page plates, four folding plates, and fifty seven text illustrations many full page.
 
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Price HK$ 1,800



The Silken East, A Record of Life and Travel in Burma - V.C. Scott O'Connor

1904 - Hutchinson & Co., London - First Edition
A superb two volume set of this detailed and magnificently presented work, accompanied by 20 colour and 380 monochrome illustrations, from sixteen paintings by James Raeburn Middleton, four by Mrs. Otway Wheeler Cuffe, and one by the Burmese court artist Saya Chone, the remainder of the black and white illustrations are mostly photographic, many taken by Felice Beato, considered one of the first war photographers and well known for his work in Burma where he had his own studio.

O'Connor ‘held various government appointments in Burma during the 1890s, following the British annexation of Thibaw's kingdom. This was a period of rapid change and O'Connor was fortunate in being able to journey widely and record much that is now lost. In the book he describes life and travel on rivers such as the Chindwin, Irrawaddy and Salween, sketching the towns and peoples he encountered along the way. He also explored the remote southern coastline of Mergui, and parts of the Shan and Palaung Hills.’ (
Kiscadale Publications). 
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Price HK$ 10,000



Narrative of the Burmese War, Detailing the Operations of Major-General Sir Archibald Campbell’s Army, from its Landing at Rangoon in May 1824, to the Conclusion of a Treaty of Peace at Yandaboo, in February 1826. - Major Snodgrass

1827 - John Murray, London - First Edition
The important first hand military account of the first Burma war by Sir Archibald Campbell’s Military Secretary and son-in-law.

With large folding engraved map
Burmese Empire [46 x 40 cm], two wood-engraved illustrations Bandoola’s Look-Out Tree at Donoobew - Mounting Four Guns and Meeting of the British and Burmese Commissioners at Neoun-Ben-Zeik. Principal Figure: The Kee-Wongee.

Patricia Herbert in her bibliography of Burma notes that ‘the tone of Major Snodgrass’ narrative is fairly typical of British attitudes and accounts of this period. His concluding remarks upon the Burmese king are: ‘
:et him then vaunt and boast, and let us smile at his harmless vanity and arrogant imbecility. The appendix contains translations of captured Burmese military documents and the text of the Treaty of Yandabo.’ 
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Price HK$ 5,500



An Embassy to the Kingdom of Ava - Michael Symes

1800 - W. Bulmer and Co., London - First Edition
‘The first full account of Burma to be published and it contains a mass of information on the history, religion, government, social systems, language, geography and economy of Burma, together with a narrative of Symes’ seven months stay in Burma, his journey to the capital and reception at court.’

A handsome first edition, finely illustrated with two folding engraved maps, eighteen engraved plates, and eight engraved botanical plates (four of which are folding).

Michael Symes was sent by Sir John Shore, Governor-General of India, to obtain from the Emperor of Ava a permit to allow a British agent to reside at Rangoon, and to induce him to close his borders to French shipping. In diplomatic terms Symes’ mission was a success.

‘Symes was accompanied by Dr. Francis Buchanan and his
Account contains eight botanical plates and descriptions of ‘the most rare and curious’ plants he collected. Other illustrations are taken from drawings by the Indian artist Singey Bey who accompanied the mission and whose accurate representational style attracted some attention at the Burmese court.’ 
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Price HK$ 29,000



 
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