The Book of the Sword - with the original Prospectus - Sir Richard Francis Burton 1884 - Chatto and Windus, London - First Edition A magnificent work on edged weapons by Burton, who was a very skilled swordsman, and published an earlier practical work on military exercises for infantry in 1876. Profusely illustrated throughout.

Rarely encountered in such nice condition, and with the bonus of the original prospectus which clearly announces that this is to be the first of three parts. This, the first, ‘
treats of the birth, parentage and early career of the sword. It begins with the very beginning, in pre-historic times and amongst proto-historic peoples; and it ends with the full growth of the Sword at the epoch of the early Roman Empire.’ Parts two and three are also described in the prospectus, but despite Lady Burton’s efforts to find someone to complete the two volumes after Burton’s death, the haphazard collection of notes, partial manuscripts, and the commercial failure of the first volume, were enough to put off any publisher.
  Provenance: Chapman family of Whitby, Yorkshire, with armourial bookplate of Joseph John Chapman (’Crescit sub pondere virtus’), and subsequent contemporary gift inscription dated 6th January 1901, to his son W. H. Chapman (Captain Wilfred Hubert Chapman 1880-1915 (Gallipoli)).

Reference: Penzer,
An Annotated Bibliography of Sir Richard Francis Burton, 107.

Large octavo (book size 28 x 20 cm), pp. xxxix [1] 299 [1]. In publisher’s light grey cloth, spine lettered and decorated in gilt, intricate decorations in brown to spine and front board, publisher’s device in brown to rear board, black coated endpapers. Prospectus (page size 26.8 x 18.8 cm), pp. 4. with order form on last page, partially split along folds.
  Condition: Fine in near fine cloth covers, light wear to corners and spine ends, small tear and minor fading to gilt on spine, one or two pages over opened.   Ref: 109404   Price: HK$ 18,000