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Book Description

(iii)-viii, [2], 512 pp., 2 maps (1 folding), 7 hand-col plates (2 folding, including 1 large double-page panorama), 2 plain plates (1 folding) + 3 leaves of musical notation, 4to, cont. half calf, front joint neatly repaired, rear joint cracked but firm, marbled boards. Lacks half title (leaf a1). Title and following 2 pages (Introduction) creased; occasional foxing, some offsetting. A good copy.
Dealer Notes
First edition. With hand-coloured aquatint plates after drawings by the author. Thomas Edward Bowdich (1791?-1824) was an English writer and traveller. 'In 1814, with the help of his uncle, a Mr Hope Smith, governor-in-chief of the settlements belonging to the Royal African Company, he secured a writership in the service, and subsequently left England for Cape Coast Castle. In 1816 the African Company planned a mission to the Asante, and initially contemplated appointing Bowdich to lead it. On reaching Cape Coast Castle the second time, he was judged too young and Frederick James (governor of Fort Accra) was appointed to lead the expedition. In the course of the journey, however, Bowdich superseded his chief (a bold step afterwards sanctioned by the authorities), and, through negotiations which subsequently proved controversial, formed a treaty with the king of the Asante, which promised peace to the British settlements on the Gold Coast in return for commercial and political co-operation.' (ODNB) On his return to England in 1818 he wrote this detailed account of his expedition, which was published the following year. The work, with its glowing account of Asante society and culture, attracted considerable interest.
Bowdich was married to Sarah [née Wallis; other married name Lee] (1791-1856), and English naturalist, explorer, author, artist, and protégé of the French eminent naturalist Georges Cuvier. She accompanied Bowdich on two of his African expeditions. She became the first European woman ever to collect plants systematically in tropical west Africa, and also the first woman known to have discovered whole new genera of plants.
Abbey, Travel 279.
Author BOWDICH, T. EDWARD
Date 1819
Binding Half calf
Publisher John Murray: London,
Condition Good
Pages (iii)-viii, [2], 512 pp.

Price: £1350.00

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