A Description of the Azores, or Western Islands. From Personal Observations, comprising Remarks on their Peculiarities, Topographical, Geological, Statistical, etc., and on their Hitherto Neglected Condition - Captain Boid 1835 - Edward Churton, London - First Edition A rare first edition illustrated with four lithographic plates and a folding map. Captain Edward Boid served in Donna Maria’s naval armament, as Secretary to Admiral Sartorius, his account of the Azores is still considered one of the first and most important traveller’s accounts of this group of lush Islands located in the mid-Atlantic roughly 950 miles from the Portuguese coast and 2,000 miles from Nova Scotia.

Among the areas covered in the early chapters are agriculture, zoology, trade and commerce, government, customs, and religion. The second half of the work provides individual chapters on the separate Islands.

Included is a reprinted review by the Spectator Magazine (originally published 6th December 1934).
  ‘The year of 1832 brought to the Azores the famous liberal expedition commanded by Dom Pedro and almost entirely composed of British troops. Integrated in this military contingent was Captain Edward Boid, author of "A Description of the Azores or Western Islands" (1834), a travel book that registers the experiences and impressions he gathered during his stay in the archipelago. The narrative comprises two opposite but complementary perspectives of the Western Islands that reflect the complexity of the author's character and background. Although Boid's aesthetic vision of nature and his fascination for the picturesque and sublime aspects of landscape in the Azores reveal his romantic tendencies, his views about the socio-economic and political situations in the archipelago are profoundly negative. Therefore, he frequently accuses the Portuguese civil and religious authorities of incompetence and negligence. The book also contains some relevant details for the study of the Britain military presence in Portugal during the civil war, that it lend considerable historical interest’ - João Paulo A. Pereira da Silva, ‘A perspectiva do comandante Edward Boid’ (1988).

Provenance: Formally owned by renowned British zoologist Leonard Harrison Matthews (1901-86), with his name to front free endpaper. Harrison Point and Matthews Point in South Georgia are named after him.

Reference: Edgardo Medeiros Silva,
Boston-Ponta Delgada 1815, 447.

Duodecimo (binding23.2x14.9cm), pp. [4] vii [1] 373 [3].
  Bound in recent quarter tan calf over cream paper boards, spine lettered in gilt, all edges untrimmed, text block re-sewn, new endpapers.   Condition: Fine in fine binding   Ref: 110458   Price: HK$ 8,000