Description

    Henry Salt. A Voyage to Abyssinia and Travels into the Interior of that Country executed under the orders of the British government, in the years 1809 and 1810; in which are included, an account of the Portuguese settlements on the East Coast of Africa, visited in the course of the voyage; some particulars respecting the aboriginal African tribes, extending from Mosambique to the borders of Egypt; together with vocabularies of their respective languages. Illustrated with a map of Abyssinia, numerous engravings, and charts. London: F.C. and J. Rivington, 1814.

    First edition. Quarto. xvi, 506, lxxv, [1, blank] pp. With two engraved vignettes and thirty-four engraved plates, including the folding hand-colored map, six charts (four of which are folding), and twenty-seven full-page illustrations. Missing the chart of Annesley Bay, else it corresponds to the list of plates, maps, and charts.

    Modern half brown morocco over red cloth. Titles stamped in gilt. Six compartments between five raised bands on the spine. Edges untrimmed. Replace endpapers. Light scattered foxing to contents, else extraordinarily clean and crisp.

    Perhaps the most striking elements of this first edition of Salt's Voyage to Abyssinia are the numerous charts, including a large hand-colored map of Abyssinia that folds out to 30 x 23 inches (761 x 584 mm.). Equally impressive are the engraved illustrations which comprise representations of the peoples, architecture, flora and fauna, and landscape of Ethiopia in the first decade of the nineteenth-century. In addition to being a prominent traveler and diplomat of the early nineteenth-century, Englishman Henry Salt (1780-1827) was also an archaeologist of some repute, and an accomplished artist and draughtsman. Salt published A Voyage to Abyssinia five years after his participation in a government-sponsored mission to Ethiopia intended to establish diplomatic relations with Ras Wolde Selassie. Blackmer 1479; Brunet V, 96.


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