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SÉBAH, Jean Pascal, & Policarpe Joaillier.

Panorama de Constantinople pris de la Tour de Galata.

Istanbul: Sébah & Joaillier, c.1888 Stock Code: 139037
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Remarkable photographic panorama of Istanbul

Superb panoramic view of the city taken from the Galata Tower looking over the Bosporus towards the Asian side; across the Golden Horn can be seen the Topkapi Palace, and the great mosques of the city, Haghia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, the Yeni Mosque, and the Süleymaniye. In 1857 Pascal Sébah opened one of the first photographic studios in Constantinople. Having met with great success, in 1873 he expanded the business setting up a further establishment in Cairo, near to the renowned Shepheard's Hotel. In 1883 he suffered a stroke and the business was taken over by his son Jean, who styled himself J. Pascal Sebah so as not to break the continuity of the business, but was to become a talented photographer in his own right. In 1888 he went into partnership with a French photographer resident in Istanbul, Policarpe Joaillier, the firm in time becoming official photographers of the Sultan. In various forms this business continued down to the middle of the twentieth century when, in 1952, its last incarnation Foto Sabah finally closed its doors.

"From the 1870s, Sébah and Joaillier, were major suppliers of evocative imagery to the increasing number of people who undertook the Victorian Grand Tour" (Hannavy, p. 1261).

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Landscape folio (320 x 383 mm). Original red sand-grained cloth over bevelled boards, red roan spine, title gilt to front cover within elaborate art nouveau gilt panel and incorporating images of the Galata and Maiden's towers, gilt stamp to back cover of the ay-yıldız (star and crescent) within a laurel wreath.


10 albumen prints mounted on card panels and joined with linen tape, leporello-style, to form a panorama approximately 3,470 mm, over 11 feet, in length (card panels 3054 x 340 mm; photographic prints 247 x 340 mm).


Loosely inserted is the beautiful etched bookplate executed by the artist Georg Broel (1884-1940) for the Duisberg merchant Rudolf Nirrnheim; Broel was a prolific and distinguished designer of ex libris. Spine a little rubbed, sides patchily faded, foxing to endleaves, first panel detached from others, second split but holding, a little discolouration to lower margins, final mount a little abraded at lower edge and dusty at fore-margin yet this remains a very good exemplar, the images clean, well-defined and crisp.


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