Antiquarian Auctions

US Auction #1 begins on 19 Mar 2020

SA Auction #81 begins on 05 Mar 2020

Robert Moffat


Published: John Snow, London, 1842

Edition: 1st.

Lot closed

Sold for: $250

Bids: 1

Visits: 32

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The first edition - sixth thousand of this important title by the Scottish Missionary, father-in-law of David Livingstone and first translator of the bible into Setswana. 8vo. 624pp. with 12pp. of advertisements at the rear. Bound in handsome full olive green morocco with elaborate gilt and blind decoration on both front and rear boards and the spine, which has five raised bands. All edges gilt. With the hand coloured frontispiece and multiple black and white engravings by G. Baxter and a folding map. 

Condtion: The book is tight with intact endpapers. There is an ownership signature on a front blank flyleaf. The edges of the boards are lightly rubbed and there is early evidence of a 3cm. split of the lower front joint but not affecting the stability of the book. The text is generally clean with very occasional mild foxing. The plates (on different paper) have somewhat more foxing - mild to moderate. The map has a 4-5cm. tear at its base at the site of its attachment to the page of text. The last leaf of advertisements also has a 5cm. tear. 

Altogether still an attractive copy. 

"Missionary Labours and Scenes in Southern Africa is Moffat's best know book. The book outlines South African missions before Moffat and then recounts his experiences in Lattakoo and later Kuruman, his visits to Moselekatze, and his work from 1817 until 1840. He then continued at Kuruman until 1871, when he returned to England and died there in 1883. 

The Missionary Labours must have been a great success when it was first published. The copy in the Strange Collection has 'Fifth thousand' on the title-page; while the British Museum lists 4th. edition 1842 and 11th. thousand 1846. Missionary Labours is a very good book and a very important item of Africana..." (Africana Repositary, R.F. Kennedy, Juta, 1965). 

  • Binding Condition: Very Good
  • Overall Condition: Good
  • Size: 8vo.
  • Sold By: Ronald Levine - Modern First Editions
  • Contact Person: Ronald Levine
  • Country: South Africa
  • Email:
  • Telephone: 27 11 728-2044
  • Preferred Payment Methods: EFT for S.African customers and PayPal or Bank Transfer for overseas clients. I regret that I no longer accept Credit Cards..
  • Trade Associations: SABDA

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