The Eldorado of the Ancients

Published: London: C. Arthur Pearson Ltd.

Date: 1902

first edition in English, first & most gilt decorated state of the binding tall 8vo. x, 447, [1]pp., 2 folding maps (1 very large), frontispiece portrait plate, numerous illustration through text leaves i(including many ful-page), original terracotta cloth, front cober and spine gilt blocked and lettered, top edge gilt, rear inner hinge neatly reinforced with paper tape, else a very good bright copy.

Karl (Carl) Peters (1856 - 1918), German colonial ruler, explorer, politician and author, was a key figure in the establishment of the German colonies in East Africa (part of the modern republic Tanzania). "He was a proponent of Social Darwinism and the Völkisch philosophy [and] his attitude towards the indigenous population made him one of the most controversial colonizers even during his lifetime .... After three investigations [of his excesses in German East Africa] he was, during 1897, dishonourably deprived of his commission for misuse of official power, losing all his pension benefits. He evaded the final sentence and further criminal prosecution by relocating to London, where he occupied himself with schemes for exploiting parts of Rhodesia and Portuguese East Africa. In the interests of a gold mining company he formed, Peters explored the Fura district and Macombes country on the Zambezi river, where during 1899 he discovered ruins of cities and deserted gold mines of the medieval Kingdom of Mutapa, which he identified as the legendary ancient lands of Ophir. He returned during 1901 and gave an account of his explorations in Im Goldland des Altertums (The Eldorado of the Ancients) (1902)" [Wikipedia]. This book, an account of his explorations and researches 1896-1902 "intended to prove that the most ancient nations in history obtained their gold, ivory, and other precious goods from South Africa" [introduction]. Despite its utterly unsavoury author an important book on the the areas of modern Mozambique and Zimbabwe.


Offered by P & B Rowan