Views in Palestine from The Original Drawings of Luigi Mayer, with an Historical and Descriptive Account of The Country, and its Remarkable Places/ Vues En Palestine……+ Views in The Ottoman Empire, Chiefly in Caramania, A Part of Asia Minor Hitherto Unexplored, With Some Curious Selections from The Islands of Rhodes and Cyprus, and The Celebrated Cities of Cornith, Carthage and Tripoli.. TWO VOLUMES IN ONE.

Mayer, Luigi.

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Book ID: 20897


Folio (447 x 320 mm), 47 pp., English and French text, 24 aquatint plates finished in handcolour, with description of each plate in English and French [BOUND WITH]: Views in the Ottoman Empire, chiefly in Caramania.... (4), 40 pp., with 24 aquatint plates finished in hand-colour; contemporary tree-calf gilt, re-cased with only minor restorations to spine; original red-and-gilt title label and ornaments on spine, Custom brown cloth clamshell box, Plates and text generally very fresh with very minor occasional light spotting, a very pleasant volume, first edition, printed by Thomas Bensley for Robert Bowyer, London, 1803 -1804.


FIRST EDITIONS AND HANDSOME COPIES of Mayer’s views of the Holy Land and the Ottoman Empire, including a total of 48 fine aquatint plates. In addition to the magnificent views of cities and ruins, there are many plates of ethnographic interest depicting native costume.
Diplomats were in an ideal position to contribute to the spread of knowledge about the countries they visited. Although he was in many respects an amateur, Sir Robert Ainslie compensated his lack of training with his enthusiasm as an Orientalist. He was the English ambassador in Istanbul from 1776 to 1792 and became a particular favourite of the Sultan Ahmed IV. He availed himself of his position to assemble a large collection of ancient coins from North Africa, Eastern Europe and the Near East, many of which were published by Domenico Sestini in Leghorn. Ainslie also employed a draughtsman, Luigi Mayer from Rome who had been a pupil of one of the greatest artists of his day, Giovanni Battista Piranesi. In 1792, before accompanying his patron back to England, Mayer toured Egypt, Caramania and Palestine and executed many of the fine drawings.
Bibliographic references: Blackmer 1098; Abbey Travel, 369; Gay 2145. Rohricht p. 339; Weber 1, 1101.

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