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The Okavango River - Charles John Andersson

1861 - Hurst and Blackett, London - First Edition
With engraved frontispiece, engraved extra title page, and fifteen further engraved plates.

A scarce example in original publisher’s cloth, of Swedish explorer, hunter, trader and naturalist Charles John Andersson’s second book, describing his hunting expeditions through Namaqualand and Damaraland (Namibia). Andersson intended to explore these countries right up to Cunene or Nourse River but the difficulties of the expedition, though encountered with indomitable courage, proved to be insuperable, and he had to turn back. He obtained, however, much valuable information and his success as a hunter and collector was unique in this part of the continent. The coast-line of South-West Africa is carefully described and there is an interesting account of the once-famed guano island, Ichaboe.’ – Mendelssohn.

Charles John (Karl Johan) Andersson (1827-67) - The Swedish explorer, hunter, trader and naturalist Charles John Andersson was born on 4 March, 1827 in Vårmland, Sweden, and died on 9 July, 1867 in Angola. He was the illegitimate son of Llewellyn Lloyd (1792– 1876), a British bear hunter, and his Swedish servant. Andersson grew up in Sweden, where he hunted with his father and started to collect natural history objects. In the years 1847–1849 he studied in Lund. In 1849 he went to London, hoping to sell his natural history collection in order to finance his travels. There he met Francis Galton (1822–1911), and they decided to make a joint expedition to Southern Africa. In June 1850 they arrived at the Cape and travelled from there to Walvis Bay by boat. They went far inland on their expedition, aiming to reach Lake Ngami, which had been discovered not long before by David Livingstone (1813–1873), but were unsuccessful. Galton then returned to England, but Andersson remained in Africa and finally managed to reach Lake Ngami from Namibia in 1853.

In 1853 he returned to London, where he eventually published
Lake Ngami (1854), the record of his two expeditions. He returned to Africa the same year, 1854. For a short time he worked as a manager of a number of mines in Namibia, but he preferred to continue his explorations, reaching the Okavango river in 1859 (The Okavango River, 1861).

Next he went to Cape Town where he married and then settled with his wife in Otjimbingwe in central Namibia (then South-West Africa), where Andersson made a living as a breeder of cattle and a trader. In 1867 he travelled north, to the Portuguese settlements in Angola, in the hope of opening up a better route of communication with Europe. However, he did not manage to cross the Kunene River and had to return. On his way back he died after a short illness, and was buried by his companion. After his death his wife and children went to live in Cape Town. His
Notes of Travel (1875) were posthumously published by his father. Andersson had collected some 400 species of birds on his travels; his notes on the ornithology of Namibia were published posthumously as Notes on the birds of Damaraland and the adjacent territories of South-West Africa (1872).’ – Anne S. Troelstra, Bibliography of Natural History Travel Narratives (Wallis 1936). 
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Price HK$ 18,000



Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile, in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772, and 1773 - James Bruce of Kinnaird

1790 - Printed by J. Ruthven, Edinburgh - First Edition
A superior set of the first edition, one of the great annals of travel and explorations in Africa, a cornerstone of any collection of Africana. In addition to the three large folding copper-engraved maps, there are fifty-eight copper-engraved plates (four of which are maps or battle plans) and seven pages of Ethiopic language.

A Scotsman with ability and education, James Bruce, 1730-1794, was appointed the English consul to Algiers, serving for two years before resigning to roam North Africa investigating architectural ruins. Following this preparation, he set off to fulfil his great ambition, to discover the source of the Nile. His travels into Abyssinia, a remarkable solo undertaking, resulted in the present body of work which not only includes the narrative of his travels but also comments on the history and religion of Egypt, an account of Indian trade, a history of Abyssinia and other such material.

The DNB notes that while Bruce would not be confused with "a great scholar or a judicious critic..., few books of equal compass are equally entertaining; and few such monuments exist of the energy and enterprise of a single traveller." The many engraved plates are finely executed, and present primarily the flora and fauna encountered by Bruce on his travels.
 
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Price HK$ 50,000



The Monuments of Egypt; or, Egypt a witness for the Bible, - with - Notes of a Voyage up the Nile by an American. - Francis L. Hawks (editor), John L. Stephens

1850 - Geo P. Putnam, New York - First Edition
Striking copy of this comprehensive description of Egypt intwo parts, the first compiled from various well known works, and illustrated throughout with colour and tinted lithographs, and black and white in-text sketches and drawings. Uncommon in original publisher’s gilt illustrated cloth, without restoration or rebinding.

The second part titled ‘
Journal of a Voyage up the Nile, made between November, 1848, and April, 1849’ is an entertaining travelogue commonly attributed to John Lloyd Stephens, the renowned American archaeologist, famed for his exploration of the Maya runs in Central America, and an acquaintance Hawks met in London. 
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Price HK$ 3,000



Travels in West Africa - Congo Français, Corisco and Cameroons - Mary Henrietta Kingsley

1897 - Macmillan and Co., London - First Edition
A near fine first edition, illustrated throughout, including 16 halftone plates, 2 lithographic plates, and numerous in-text photographs.

‘From fighting with crocodiles, to being caught in a tornado on the slopes of Mount Cameroon, all while wearing her habitual trailing skirts, high collars, and fur cap, the solo adventures of Victorian traveller Mary Kingsley (1862-1900), as narrated in her best selling book,
Travels in West Africa are nothing short of incredible.’

I have seen many wild animals in their native wilds, but never have I seen anything to equal gorillas going through the bush; it is a graceful, powerful, superbly perfect hand-trapeze performance. 
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Price HK$ 5,000



Seven Pillars of Wisdom. A Triumph - T. E. Lawrence

1935 - Jonathan Cape, London - First Trade Edition Limited to 750 copies
A superlative copy, in the delicate pigskin which is usually found it much poorer condition. Number 573 of the limited edition of 750 numbered copies in original quarter pigskin, with an extra four colour plates. In total 54 plates and illustrations, four folding maps, and three facsimiles.

Together with two other relevant volumes:- The first edition of ‘
Oriental Assembly’ (Williams & Norgate, 1939) which contains the suppressed introductory chapter for ‘Seven Pillars’ and other miscellaneous writings by Lawrence mostly concerning the Arab campaign; and the revised edition of Liddell Hart’s brilliant and illuminating ‘T. E. Lawrence. In Arabia and After’ (Cape, 1935).

The autobiographical and legendary account of the experiences of T. E. Lawrence ('Lawrence of Arabia') while serving as a liaison officer with rebel forces during the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Turks of 1916 to 1918. Winston Churchill stated that this ‘ranks with the greatest books ever written in the European Language’.

‘With its richly detailed evocation of the land and the people Lawrence passionately believed in, its incisive portraits of key players, from Faisal ibn Hussein, the future Hashemite king of Syria and Iraq, to General Sir Edmund Allenby and other members of the British imperial forces,
Seven Pillars of Wisdom is an indispensable primary historical source. It helps us to understand today’s Middle East, while giving us thrilling accounts of military exploits (including the liberation of Aqaba and Damascus), clandestine activities, and human foibles.’ [Penguin] 
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Price HK$ 25,000



Seven Pillars of Wisdom. A Triumph - T. E. Lawrence

1935 - Jonathan Cape, London - First Trade Edition
A finely bound example of this autobiographical and legendary account of the experiences of T. E. Lawrence ('Lawrence of Arabia') while serving as a liaison officer with rebel forces during the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Turks of 1916 to 1918. Illustrated with 54 plates, and four folding maps.

Winston Churchill stated that this ‘ranks with the greatest books ever written in the European Language’.

‘With its richly detailed evocation of the land and the people Lawrence passionately believed in, its incisive portraits of key players, from Faisal ibn Hussein, the future Hashemite king of Syria and Iraq, to General Sir Edmund Allenby and other members of the British imperial forces,
Seven Pillars of Wisdom is an indispensable primary historical source. It helps us to understand today’s Middle East, while giving us thrilling accounts of military exploits (including the liberation of Aqaba and Damascus), clandestine activities, and human foibles.’ [Penguin] 
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Price HK$ 7,000



Voyage dans les Mers de l'Inde - Guillaume Joseph Le Gentil de la Galaisière

1779 - Imprimerie Royale, Paris - First Editions
‘Two monumental volumes... crammed with details on astronomy, navigation, and natural history... His descriptions of life in Manila, Pondicherry, and Madagascar are invaluable’ (Dunmore).

A stunning set In contemporary bindings and illustrated with twenty seven folding copper engravings showing two world maps, maps charts and plans of Eastern and Western Philippines, Bay of Manila, Philippine Harbours, Manilla, Madagascar and it’s coastline, Isle de France (Mauritius), Isle de Bourbon (Réunion), Quartier S. Denis on Réunion, Eastern and Western Straits of Malacca, and Pondicherry. Together with engraved plates of animals and plant life, the ruins of Pondicherry, pagodas, Indian deities, and charts of comets and constellations.

‘In addition to the scientific details for which the voyage was undertaken, the first volume treats of the manners, customs, and religion or the people of the Malabar Coast and of the astronomy of the Brahmins. The second volume contains elaborate accounts of the Philippine Islands, Madagascar, Mauritius, and Bourbon and their inhabitants, including views and charts of the Philippines. Le Gentil gives details of the Islands, their climate, volcanoes, fertility, fruits, birds, animals, peoples, language, history, and description of Manila, the government, ecclesiastical and civil, commerce, &c.’ (Edwards).
 
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Price HK$ 37,000



Across East African Glaciers - Hans Meyer

1891 - George Philip & Son, London - First Edition in English
A superb example of the first edition, in the publisher’s original and first state illustrated cover highlighting the snow in white and additional colour to the tents and clearing, described by Neate as ‘a most handsome volume’. With mounted chromolithographed frontispiece, three folding colour maps, eight mounted photographic plates, and twelve photogravures

‘Hans Meyer was a geologist and experienced climber who made four trips to the Kilimanjaro region in 1887-1889 culminating in his successful ascent – the first undisputed summit of Kibo, 19,340 feet, the highest of the mountain's three peaks – in 1889. In an earlier attempt, Meyer and his companion Oscar Baumann had the misfortune to arrive in the midst of an Arab revolt against German traders on the East African coast. They were captured and held hostage until a substantial ransom was paid. Meyer's ultimate success has been attributed to his recognition that the greatest obstacle to achieving the summit was the lack of food in the upper regions. He brought a sizeable and well organized party and established several camps on the mountain, allowing him to make multiple attempts at the summit without descending to the base. His lively and highly readable account of the expedition is arguably the most important work on African mountaineering.’ -
Walkabout Books. 
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Price HK$ 40,000



 
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