Burchell, William J. – Travels in the Interior of Southern Africa


Product Description

(London: The Batchworth Press, 1953)

An edition limited to 1250 copies reprinted from the original edition of 1822-4 with some additional material and with an introduction by I. Schapera. Two royal 8vo volumes; original blue buckram lettered in gilt on spines; tinted top edges; pp. xxix + (i) + 381 + 3 xvi + 473 incl. index; several plates; line vignettes in text; folding map in each volume. Covers partially sunned; some spotting. A very good set. Concerning the first edition of which this is a facsimile Mendelssohn writes: ‘The most valuable and accurate work on South Africa published up to the first quarter of the nineteenth century and embracing a description of a large part of the Cape Colony and Bechuanaland at this period. Theal (History of South Africa 1795-1834″) remarks that the author was “a man of talent an easy writer and scrupulously exact in his descriptions” and according to Sclater he was “a most skillful and well-trained zoologist and botanist and his observations are all accurate and methodical.” Burchell penetrated as far as “Lattakoo” (afterwards known as Kuruman) and during his explorations which extended over a period of four years made important collections of the fauna flora and curiosities of the country together with a large number of drawings. … The illustrations in the volumes are characterised by great beauty and accuracy and it is stated in the Preface that “in order to ensure greater correctness in the vignettes the author has made all these drawings upon the blocks themselves” … ‘ – Mendelssohn I p. 224″