NEILL, John Martin Bladen
Recollections of Four Years’ Service in the East with H.M. Fortieth Regiment:
Comprising an Account of the Taking of Kurachee in Lower Scinde in 1839; Operations in Upper Scinde in 1840 and 1841; And The Operations of the Candahar Division of " The Avenging Army in Affghanistan " in 1841 and 1842; Under Major-General Sir W. Nott, G.C.B.
Second edition, first published in the previous year, fairly uncommon in either edition with just a couple of dozen copies of both located by OCLC worldwide. Excellent account of the First Afghan War. John Martin Bladen Neill (1814-59) “entered the service in 1833 as an ensign in the 40th Regiment. He became lieutenant in 1835, adjutant in 1840, captain in 1842, major in 1849, and deputy-adjutant general of the Australian colonies, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel, in 1855. When Fort Jinnora, Lower Scinde, in 1839, was captured, he was adjutant of the 40th; .his commanding officer being Brigadier Valliant, father of Colonel Valliant of the same regiment. Lieut.-Colonel Neill, served through the whole of the second campaign in Afghanistan, was present in every action with the Candahar division of the Army, and received a medal for his services, inscribed Candahar, Ghuznee, Cabool” (Neill’s obituary, The Argus, Melbourne). Neill’s wife Florentia was one of the founders of the Victorian Ladies’ Silk Association, Australia’s first silk co-operative, set up to promote silk cultivation and to educate poorer women in rural areas. Near contemporary circular bookplate with the Marjoribanks crest – a lion’s gamb erect and erased grasping a tilting lance the point downward – and motto – “Advance with Courage” – to the front pastedown, modern collector’s bookplate of Philip Kamil to the front free endpaper, American collector’s inked ownership inscription to the first blank, slightly unsightly, beneath the bookseller’s ticket of Hutchins Oriental Books of Pasadena.
Octavo. Slightly later red half morocco, marbled boards, rebacked with the original spine down, hinges lined with linen, title gilt direct to the spine, narrow bands, comaprtments gilt with repeated foliate tools, marbled edges and endpapers. Portrait frontispiece of Sir William Nott, bound with the half title. A little rubbed at the extremities, short repair to the fore-edge of the half-title, no loss, light browning throughout, else very good.
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