DALRYMPLE, ALEXANDER Oriental Repertory. London: George Bigg, 1793-97. First edition, a large paper copy. Two volumes, conte...
London: George Bigg, 1793-97. First edition, a large paper copy. Two volumes, contemporary calf backed boards. 12 1/2 x 9 1/2 inches (32 x 24.5 cm); Volume I with 16 plates and maps (some folding), 4, 4, , iv, iv, iv, iv, , 578 pp., index; Volume II with 13 maps and plates (some folding), 2, 2, iv, 4, 4, iv, 576 pp. Together 29 plates and maps. This set without printed wrappers, the contents leaf in volume I only, volume II without a general title (as commonly reported) and without section titles, the title leaf A Plan for the Publication dated 1790 inserted at front and likely purposely misimposed, the fifth part (published 1808) not present here. Explorers Club bookplate to pastedown, blindstamps to title and occasionally elsewhere, ink numerals to a preliminary leaf in both volumes, the lower corner of Hhh2 torn away and a small tape repair to verso of one map but internally this is generally a clean copy, the bindings nearly defective with the text block of volume I split, the work is bibliographically complex and thus sold as is.
This is a very clean, wide-margined copy of a rare collection of tracts devoted to the history and commerce of India and China and, according to the prospectus, was issued in 250 only copies. This copy conforms somewhat to the Brooke-Hitching copy, excepting that copy's extra-illustrations, in that it is a large paper copy without a general title in volume II or the 1808 continuation. It seems that the text leaf of the Plan for the Publication is bound appropriately in volume I while its dated title leaf is inserted as the title page of volume II. This is an elegantly presented work, with finely executed plated and maps. Besides the Brooke-Hitching copy (sold Sotheby's, 30 November 2014, lot 356) we trace no copy with all plates and maps sold at auction in decades.
C The Explorers Club Collection
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