Antiquarian Auctions

Auction #115 begins on 30 May 2024

John Barrow

An Account of Travels into the Interior of Southern Africa, in the Years 1797 and 1798

Published: T. Cadell Jun. and W. Davies, London, 1801 & 1804

Edition: First Edition

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'An Account of Travels into the Interior of Southern Africa, in the Years 1797 and 1798: including cursory observations on the geology and geography of the southern part of that continent; the natural history of such objects as occurred in the animal, vegetable, and mineral kingdoms; and sketches of the physical and moral characters of the various tribes of inhabitants surrounding the settlement of the Cape of Good Hope. To which is annexed, a description of the present state, population, and produce of that extensive colony; with a map constructed entirely from actual observations made in the course of the Travels.'

Two 4to volumes in later half calf with marbled boards.

Vol.I: viii + 419pp + (i), incl. index. Large, folding map with hand-coloured route.

Condition: Front board somewhat warped from damp. Large fold-out map at front has antique paper reinforcement along the centre fold. Contents generally clean.

Vol.II: xi + (i) + 452, incl. index. Folding frontispiece and a further eight folding map engravings, two with contemporary colouring.  

Condition: Front and rear boards warped from damp. All maps and frontispiece in good condition. Some discolouration to margins.

Taken "as is" this cornerstone Africana title is "about fair" only, but would exhibit well when rebound.

'Mr. (afterwards Sir John) Barrow was attached to the staff of the Earl of Macartney, one of the Governors of the Cape Colony during the first occupation of the British. ... Mr. Barrow accompanied an expedition from Cape Town to Graaff-Reinet, and another to Namaqualand, and he gives an excellent description of the country traversed, particularly with regard to the botany and zoology of these regions. Algoa Bay was visited, and observations taken of the bay and the coast, together with the "circumjacent" country, mention being made of the discovery of lead at Van Staaden's River. Significant evidence is afforded with regard to the alleged brutality of the Boers to their slaves and their Hottentot servants, and there is a description of the characteristics, habits and customs of the various native races.  The author and his companions had an interview with ... Gaika, and he remarks, "We were surprised to find so much good sense and prudence in a very young man ..."  Among the districts visited was the Bushman country; the expedition proceeding later on to Plettenberg Bay.  The second volume contains detailed accounts of the various divisions of the Cape Colony, together with much information concerning the inhabitants, and the importance of the country from a military and commercial point of view.' - Mendelssohn.

  • Binding Condition: Poor
  • Overall Condition: Fair
  • Sold By: Rare Paper
  • Contact Person: Armandt Marais
  • Country: South Africa
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Telephone: 0741235861
  • Preferred Payment Methods: EFT, Bank Deposit. For International Customers: Paypal with 6% surcharge, International Transfer
  • Trade Associations: A. A. Approved

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