Travels in Turkey, Egypt, Nubia & Palestine in 1824, 1825, 1826 & 1827. TWO VOLUMES.

Madden, Richard Robert, 1798-1886.

Book ID: 1388


8vo. Volume I: xvi, 401 pp., [1], hand colour aquatint frontispiece of the author in Syrian costume after Henry Salt, light offsetting to title / Volume II: viii, 398 pp., elegant period dark blue calf binding, gilt decorated boards and spine, slightly rubbed round the edges, marbled endpapers and outer edges, title gilt on spine, occasional foxing mainly on fly leaves and last few pages, previous owner’s inscription on title page of volume 2, otherwise set in very good condition, Ex-Libris from the library of the Kennedy Clan, Henry Colburn, London, first edition, 1829.


Madden writes this work in the form of letters, which were compiled from notes. The letters, arranged chronologically and presented as individual chapters, spanning the duration of Madden’s time in the east, and their epistolary format lends them a refreshing immediacy. Madden has trained as a surgeon, though he never practised in England, it enabled him to enter areas closed to most Europeans, mainly the harem and some bazaars,allowing him to write about harems, slave markets, religion, crime and punishment, politics and numerous other subjects as well as medicine. In his preface, he describes the difficulties he encountered as a traveller to the East, whose “fate has been to have taken for a spy in Syria, to have endangered my life in Candia, for refusing to administer poison – to have been shot at in Canea twice, and once on the Nile by Turkish soldiers – to have been accused of changing the fragments of a broken statue into gold at Thebes – to have been charged with sorcery in Nubia – and to have been a captive with Greek pirates for wearing a long beard, when taken in a vessel bearing Turkish property…”
He travelled in the Levant from 1824-1827. His work also contains much information on Egypt and Egyptology.
Bibliographic references: Blackmer 1056; Ibrahim-Hilmy II p. 3; Röhricht 1707; Tobler p. 150; Weber 178.

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