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Days and Nights of Shikar - Mrs. W. W. Baillie

1921 - John Lane, London and New York - First Edition
‘Mrs Baillie seems to have been an incurable big-game hunter. She was married to a clergyman stationed in the Deccan; from there (rarely accompanied by the gentle padre) she made expeditions as far afield as Chamba in the Himalaya and Dharwar towards the south, in search of trophies to bring home to England.

‘This book is less bloodthirsty, than many; the worst moments in it are no concerned with the poor animals’ appointment with death, but with the author's own, which she managed to postpone twice at the very last minute.

‘The first time was on a night shoot from Bilaspur, near Simla. She had placed a goat’s carcass as a decoy under the hammock; unfortunately, just as an obliging tiger was approaching, the hammock string snapped and bowled Mrs Baillie into the mess below. Meanwhile the tiger fled away.

‘A closer shave involved a black bear, who caught our heroine as she fell from a rock, first chewing her leg and then making off with her head–for which it luckily mistook her sola topi, The leg healed after five weeks in hospital, and nothing daunted, Mrs Baillie lived to shoot another day.’ – Jane Robinson,
Wayward Women. 
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Price HK$ 900



Selections from the Popular Poetry of The Hindoos - Thomas Duer Broughton [Editor Translator]

1814 - Printed by Whittingham and Rowland for John Martin, London - First Edition
A pretty and scarce first edition of the first published anthology of Hindi Poets. Internally fine and unopened. 
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Price HK$ 5,000



“Tried Favourites.” Being a collection of Recipes by some Mamsahibs of Bombay together with Menus and useful Information to House=keepers of both sexes - Mrs. Fett

1928 - Published in aid of A Special Branch of Y.W.C.A. Work. Printed at The Industrial Press, Bombay - First Edition
When the Memsahib has chewed off the end of her pencil in her effort to think of “something different” – and when the cook has achieved his blankest and most aloof expression then will this little book be triumphantly brought forth and opened at the “MENU” pages, and calm will be restored ! !

Rare little work, which not only provides recipes and menus but also prie lists of the Bombay market, details on domestic servants, stores, and more. With a number of wonderfully illustrated advertisements targeting the modern Memsahib.
 
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Price HK$ 900



Sport on the Nilgiris and in Wynaad - F. W. F. Fletcher

1911 - Macmillan & Co., London - First Edition
‘Fletcher introduces both the terrain and the history of the Nilgiris and Wynaad regions in India, then provides big game chapters on a species-by-species basis. Each of these chapters features not only the natural history of the animals, but also the author's experiences hunting them. Included are chapters devoted to elephant, tiger, leopards, bison, beer, tahr, ibex, sambur, and other deer species.

Fletcher switched from a .450 rifle to a .600 Jeffery: “
In cold blood the recoil from his rifle is somewhat severe; but in the excitement of shooting it is not noticeable.”’ - Czech.

Illustrated with 18 plates, and folding coloured map as frontispiece.
 
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Price HK$ 2,200



Illustrations of the Literature and Religion of the Buddhists - Brian Houghton Hodgson

1841 - Self-published – Bound at the Baptist Mission Press, Serampore - First Edition in Book Form
Hodgson’s rare and important work – the first collected edition of papers on the literature and religion of Buddhism – fifteen in total, originally published in Transactions and Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal and London, and which for the first time revealed to the West the Sanskrit literature of northern, or Mahayana, Buddhism, which had been preserved in Nepal. For the collection Hodgson adds a preface and many footnotes.

Features two folding lithographed alphabet tables. Interestingly, Hodgson published this book in Serampore, at the time a Danish colony, it would have been printed at the former Serampore Mission Press, set up by the Baptist missionary William Carey, which closed in 1837 merging with the Baptist Mission Press, where this copy was also bound (see small bookplate to front pastedown).

Hodgson later reprinted 12 of the 15 papers as part one of
Essays on the Languages, Literature and Religion of Nepal and Tibet (1874), the second part being on the tribes and geography of Nepal and Tibet, and in 1880 he published Miscellaneous Essays Relating to Indian Subjects (2 volumes, 1880), containing his papers on Indian languages and ethnology. 
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Price HK$ 16,500



Culinary Jottings: A Treatise in Thirty Chapters on Reformed Cookery for Anglo-Indian Exiles - Colonel Kenney-Herbert “Wyvern”

1885 - Higginbotham & Co., Madras - Fifth Edition
A scarce example of this popular cook book by ‘Wyvern’, expanded and revised from the first edition (’Culinary Jottings for Madras)published seven years earlier. All early editions are scarce because being a working cook book it is prone to all the usual issues that modern cookbooks are also in danger of, combined with the original cheap paper and glues used for its production in Madras.

With numerous chapters including two on ‘
Our Curries’ and ‘Curries and Mulligatunny’, as well as ‘Camp Cookery’, ending with a fascinating essay about the British kitchens of India.

Recipes include helpful hints and advice, for example ‘
Potted Prawnsought to be oftener seen at Madras than they are’ and suggestion son where to purchase the best potted meats, anecdotes (see ‘Mulligatunny’), a complete chapter titled ‘Notes on Curing of Meat’.

Published by legendary Indian book sellers Higginbotham’s, this work and other titles by ‘Wyvern’ ‘swept Higginbotham’s from being just a book establishment into becoming a part of India’s print and publishing history’ [
Bangalore Mirror] 
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Price HK$ 3,800



From Sea To Sea - Rudyard Kipling

1900 - Macmillan and Co., London - First English Edition
A near fine two volume set of first editions, housed in bespoke sheepskin lined green morocco leather slipcases.

Published in these two volumes are Kipling’s travel articles written for his various newspapers between 1887 and 1889. Covering India, Burmah, Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Japan, the United States, and Canada.
 
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Price HK$ 1,500



Hong-Kong to London; or Our New Road Home from China. by the author of "A reminiscence of Canton", &c. - Peter George Laurie

1872 Circa - Simmons & Co., London - First Edition
A fine and rare travelogue of an expatriate’s journey home from the Far East in the 1870’s. With his signature to the title page.

This is no twelve hour Cathay business class flight for Peter Laurie [1838 - 1912] who worked with Jardine Matheson & Co. as an agent in Hong Kong, then Shanghai.

The twelve month journey begins with ‘
a good blow down the China Sea to Singapore, and fine weather thence to Penang and Calcutta’. Then overland on the new main railway line from Calcutta to Benares, which he describes as in a state of incompletion, with the stations not yet finished. From Benares they tour India on the old railway lines between Allahabad, Cawnpore, Lucknow, and Delhi, returning to Allahabad. The final leg of the recenyl completed Calcutta to Bombay rail link, took them through Jubbulpore ‘the junction of the two great Indian railways’ (a combined network of 4,000 miles). This route was one inspiration for Jules Verne’s ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’.

Interlaced with Laurie’s details of the railways are thoughts and observations on the recent Indian rebellion and the sieges of both Cawnpore and Lucknow and subsequent massacres.

Embarking on one of the Peninsular & Oriental Company’s steamers, Laurie proceeds direct through the Suez Canal to Port Said and then Alexandria.

Squeezed into the last two pages is the final leg, being passage to Brindisi, rail through Europe - Rome, Florence, and ‘
owing to the Franco-Prussian war, and the impossibility of passing through France’, Venice, Munich, Cologne, Brussels, and they ‘are once again in “Merrie England”’ 
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Price HK$ 8,000



 
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