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MOLL, Herman.

Atlas Geographus: or, a Compleat System of Geography, Ancient and Modern...

Asia in One Volume.

London: Printed by John Nutt; and sold by Benjamin Barker and Charles King (and six other booksellers, all London), 1712 Stock Code: 94077
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A very good copy with an interesting provenance

First edition in book form, volume III of five, covering Asia, complete in itself and with all listed maps, charts, plates and tables, including maps of Arabia, Persia, India, China, East Indies, Japan, Tartary and Independent Tartary. The complete set of five volumes is notably scarce, and individual volumes highly uncommon. "In 1711, Moll founded Atlas Geographus, a much imitated monthly magazine which ran until 1717, when it was fully published in five volumes. When the runs of the magazines or volumes were completed, the subscriber had an up-to-date geography of the world, containing maps and other illustrations, which was far more detailed than A System of Geography 1701", Moll's first major work (ODNB).

Provenance: from the collection of British colonial officer and diplomat to various Arabic-speaking countries, Samuel Barrett Miles (1838-1914), with bookplate noting his wife's bequest of his books to Bath Public Reference Library in 1920; with associated manuscript shelf marks and blind stamps.

The map of Arabia "depicts 'desert' and 'happy' Arabia. Moll's rendering clearly indicates the higher density of named settlements in the west-southwest reaches of the Peninsula, especially the temperate mountainous regions overlooking the Red Sea down near the Indian Ocean. Also clearly visible is the north-south dotted line of towns that links Jerusalem with south Arabian ports facing the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean a long string of trading posts down the western side of the Peninsula. Note also the seafront location of the more widely spaced towns of eastern Arabia, all facing outward" (Al-Rasheed and Vitalis, p. 14).

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Quarto (222 x 173 mm). Contemporary panelled calf sometime skilfully refurbished, headbands renewed, speckled edges.


17 engraved maps, all but one folding, and all but one with contemporary hand-colour in outline, 3 engraved folding plates including a chart; printed in double columns.


Ownership inscription to head of title page of one John Prater, listed as a churchwarden at St. Giles-in-the-Fields in 1720 and a member of the Carpenters' Company; attractive engraved Teston Library bookplate of Charles Middleton, first Baron Barham (1726-1813), naval officer and administrator. Some maps with late 19th century discreet embossed stamps of Bath Library. General foxing and toning (heavy in places), yet a sound, complete copy.


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