Central Asia: from the Aryan to the Cossack.
First edition. Excellent, and uncommon, survey of the history of the region down to the Russian expedition of 1872-3, written with a wary eye on accelerating Russianization in the khanates. The author James Hutton (1818-93), was born in Calcutta, the son of a merchant. After a brief period as an ensign in the army of the East India Company he ” tumbled into a fine fortune, tumbled out of it, then applied himself to newspapering, [editing] the Delhi Gazette, the Bengal Hurkura, the Englishman, the Madras Times” (Reminiscences and Anecdotes of Great Men of India, p.186), falling out with the Madras establishment he headed to England becoming involved with Thornton Hunt and G.H. Lewes’s The Leader. “Mr Hutton was destined, however, like so many Liberals of those days, to become eventually a Conservative. He started some twenty-five years ago a morning paper called the Day, which represents the views of a particular section of the Conservative party, but failed, though conducted with great ability, to obtain their active support. After the non-success of the Day Mr Hutton went back to India for a time. He was, indeed, connected throughout his life with Indian journalism, now as editor, now as London correspondent” (obituary in the St. James’ Gazette). Hutton was the author of some half a dozen books and and the translator of several others, including an account of thuggee published in 1857, and a translation of Daumas’s Les chevaux du Sahara et les mœurs du désert (1863).
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Octavo, original red cloth, title gilt to the spine, blind panelling to the boards, dun endpapers. A little rubbed and soiled, the spine sunned, front hinge cracked and repaired, light browning throughout, but overall a very good copy.