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Oates (Frank)

MATABELE LAND AND THE VICTORIA FALLS (Presentation copy)

A Naturalist's Wanderings in the Interior of Southern Africa, from the letters & journals of the late Frank Oates, F.R.G.S.

Published: Kegan Paul, Trench, & Co., London,

Edition: Second edition

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Reserve: $1,000

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Estimate: $1250/1500

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Second edition: xlii + 433 pages, frontispiece portrait, 4 folding maps, 14 lithographs (of natural history subjects including 2 of birds by Keulemans) all but one hand coloured, 6 chromolithographic plates, woodcut vignette on title page, 38 woodcuts in the text, original green richly decorated cloth - recased with new end papers, uncut edges with slight foxing, titled gilt on the back, uncancelled stamp of the National Museum of Rhodesia - Umtali on the last index page 433, a very good copy of the second and best edition with the additional plates and appendix.

The inscription on a front free end paper reads: To Dr N.G.G. Cooper in memory of his old friend Frank Oates O.B.E. Beldock, Hert. With his best wishes January 1946: Twenty years have now rolled by since my old fellow student of 1907 -1911 died on his return to London after some 25 years' service in the Geological Surveys of the Gold Coast and Tanganyika. He was very like his uncle Frank whose journey to the Zambezi is herein described, and he often spoke of him. And Now, to end this chapter in the history of a much travelled and learned family, I pass this book to the Umtali Museum, where I hope, it may long remain to interest naturalists living in this lovely part of our country. To G.G. Cooper geologist Umtali November 1965.

There is a book plate with an illustration of the Victoria Falls pasted beneath this inscription Frank Oates In memoriam 1840 - 1875

Mendelssohn (Sydney) South African Bibliography, volume 2, page 112, '...accompanied by his brother, Mr. W.W. Oates, (he) sailed for South Africa in March 1873. The brothers fitted out their expedition at Maritzburg, and travelled through the Transvaal and Bechuanaland, visiting the Tati district, soon after which Mr W.E. Oates returned to England. Frank Oates proceeded to Bulawayo, and he gives an interesting account of Matabeleland at this period. He was well received by Lobengula, who gave him considerable assistance, but owing to many delays he made several unsuccessful attempts to reach the falls and did not arrive there till the last day of the year 1874; soon after which he was attacked by fever and died on the return journey to Tati early in February 1875. His account of Matabeleland is one of the best of the earlier modern works on the country, and the volume possesses a number of coloured and chromo plates. The appendices contain an article on South African Ethnology by Dr. George Rolleston, and catalogues and descriptions of the ornithological, botanical, and entomological collections formed by Mr. Oates.' One of the chromolithographic plates is a particularly fine view of the Victoria Falls (Western extremity).

  • Overall Condition: A Very Good Copy
  • Size: 8vo (230 x 150 mm)
  • Name: Clarke's Africana & Rare Books
  • Contact Person: Paul Mills
  • Country: South Africa
  • Email: africana@clarkes.co.za
  • Telephone: 021 794 0600
  • Preferred Payment Methods: Visa & Mastercard and Bank transfers
  • Trade Associations: ABA - ILAB, SABDA


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