“HIGHLY VALUABLE FOR ITS VARIETY AND EXTENT OF INFORMATION”: BARROW’S ILLUSTRATED TRAVELS IN SOUTHERN AFRICA, 1806 SECOND EDITION WITH EIGHT HAND-COLORED PLATES NOT PRESENT IN THE FIRST EDITION
(SOUTH AFRICA) BARROW, John. Travels into the Interior of Southern Africa. London: T. Cadell and W. Davies, 1806. Two volumes. Quarto, contemporary full brown diced calf rebacked with original spines and red morocco spine labels neatly laid down, raised bands, marbled endpapers and edges.
Second edition of Barrow’s important account, enlarged with the addition of eight hand-colored aquatints not present in the first edition. With a large folding map of Southern Africa outlined in color and eight folding plans (two hand-colored), as in the first edition. Handsome in contemporary calf.
At the time Barrow began collecting information for this work less than a tenth of the British colony of South Africa had been accurately mapped. During the course of his travels he visited the Boers, Hottentots, and the Bosjemen, performing “a journey exceeding one thousand miles on horseback, on foot, and very rarely in a covered wagon, and full half the distance as a pedestrian, and never except for a few nights sleeping under a roof.” The result was the most comprehensive work on the region published to date, with a map that at upon appearance was unrivalled in its accuracy and scope. “Highly valuable for its variety and extent of information, both political and scientific” (Lowndes, 122-23). “An excellent description of the country traversed” (Mendelssohn). The first edition of 1801-04 only included one view, a folding hand-tinted aquatint view of Cape Town not retained in this second edition, which has been enlarged with the addition of eight hand-colored engravings illustrating Boers, natives, and fauna of South Africa not present in the first edition. With half title in Volume II (only). Abbey Travel 322. Mendelssohn I, 88-89. Cox I, 398. Bookplate.
One folding map (opposite page 223 in Volume II) with expert repair to one fold and some offsetting. Text and plates generally clean with occasional expert cleaning, hand-coloring fine. Extremely good in nicely restored contemporary diced calf.