MONRO, Vere.

A Summer Ramble in Syria, with a Tartar Trip from Aleppo to Stamboul.

London: Richard Bentley, 1835 Stock Code: 139019
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A hard-riding parson in the Levant

First edition of an uncommon and entertaining narrative, presented in an appealing provincial binding of the period, a pencilled note at the head of volume I p. v reading " Bind to order / Campion", perhaps a reference to the prominent Brighton family of the same name, occupants of the imposing Elizabethan mansion of Danny Park.

Monro's book was commended by the reviewer of The London & Westminster Review as of "more than ordinary merit"; Monro's "descriptions are spirited and graphic; his style is lively and idiomatic, devoid of stiffness or affectation" and "without making any pretensions to the higher qualities required of a traveller he possesses qualifications of another kind, in a degree not possessed by the majority of travellers; an adventurous and determined spirit, and great capability of enduring fatigue and privation" (Vol. XXV, June and July 1836).

Monro graduated from University College, Oxford, took orders in 1825, and in 1826 was appointed curate of Stokesley, in the diocese of York, his contemporary reviewer remarking that he was proof that "the race of hard-riding parsons" was not extinct in England. The Egyptian leg of Monro's journey was written up by his travelling companion James Augustus St John - an odd fringe figure in the worlds of London radicalism and orientalism - in his Egypt and Mohammed Ali (1834), which is dedicated to Monro. The plates show a pilgrim encampment on the banks of the Jordan, and Monro's bivouac on Mount Lebanon, "previous to passing the snow".

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2 volumes, octavo (210 x 130 mm). Contemporary half calf by E. Burn of Brighton (with his ticket), smooth spines divided by gilt and blind fillets and a rope-twist roll, gilt decoration to first, third and fifth compartments, dark brown labels, Antique Spot pattern marbled paper sides, reddish-brown speckled edges, drab terracotta-coated endpapers.


Lithograph frontispiece to each volume, by C. Hamberger (vol. I) and Walton (vol. II) after C. E. Monro, printed by Charles Hullmandel.


Bindings rubbed, endpapers foxed, front inner hinges cracked but sound. An attractive copy.


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