from the Commencement of the War in 1812, to the Armistice Signed and Ratified June 4, 1813; with an Appendix, containing all the Bulletins issued by the French Ruler during this Contest.
First edition, uncommon, of one of the chief works of the military writer John Philippart (c.1784 – 1875), “a prolific compiler of pamphlets and books of reference relating to the British army” (ODNB). This copy has an attractive Napoleonic era provenance: with the bookplates of Thomas Buchanan, Powis House (Perthshire). Buchanan (d. 1842), was a captain in the East India Company (commanding the company ship Perseverance) and Superintendent of the Bombay Marine (later the Royal Indian Navy), who married Catherine, youngest daughter of Sir Ralph Abercromby (“a popular, well-known commander who became something of a father figure within the British army” ODNB). Each copy is inscribed on the front free endpaper: “Thomas Buchanan Island of Bombay [present day Mumbai], care of John Fraser Esq., No. 50 Lothbury London”. Fraser was an Official Assignee based in the City of London, in other words he was an officer in the law court who distributed a bankrupt’s assets to the creditors; but who may also assist the bankrupt to relieve of his obligations to the creditors. This may relate to the fact that in December 1827 Buchanan was removed from his office as Superintendent of the Bombay Marine, as that post was to come under the direct control of the Royal Navy, and a pension of £800 per annum was granted by the East India Company.
2 volumes, octavo. Original drab brown paper spines with labels, blue-grey covers, uncut. Engraved portrait frontispieces of Napoleon (by Cook after Toffanelli) and Tsar Alexander I (by Charles Heath after Kugelgen), 5 coloured engraved folding maps (seat of war in Russia, seat of war in northern Poland and Prussia, 3 campaign maps). A couple of joints split but sound. a few nicks and marks to bindings. An excellent set in the original boards, as issued.
Bibliography: Lowndes p. 1851.Don't understand our descriptions? Try reading our Glossary