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WATSON, Ernest.

The Principal Articles of Chinese Commerce (Import and Export).

With a description of the origin, appearance, characteristics, and general properties of each commodity; an account of the methods of preparation or manufacture; together with various test, etc., by means of which the different products may be readily identified. Second Edition.

Published: Shanghai: Statistical Department of the Inspectorate General of Customs, 1930

Stock code: 110458

Price: £225

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Second edition, first published in 1923, specially written by a tariff expert at the request of the Inspector General for the examination staff of the Chinese customs service and amounting to an exhaustive catalogue of import and exports going through Shanghai at the time: fibres (silk, cotton, animal hair), oils, fats, and waxes, dyes, colours, pigments, paints, and tans, metals, and “miscellaneous products” (everything from bricks to Panama hats) – and, of course, opium (mentioned on pp. 474-481). The book is cited in a recent study on that subject: Narcotic Culture: A History of Drugs in China by Dikötter, Laamann and Xun (2004).

Quarto. Original green cloth, gilt lettered spine and front cover, slate-green coated endpapers. 10 monochrome plates (largely of plant fibres), 2 illustrations in the text. Neat ownership inscription at head of title page. Spine sunned and with a little wear at joints, some abrasions at foot of front cover, inner hinges neatly strengthened, lower fore-corner bumped.

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