CARLYLE, Joseph Dacre.

Specimens of Arabian Poetry, from the Earliest Time to the Extinction of the Khalifat,

with Some Account of the Authors.

Cambridge: Printed by John Burges Printer to the University, 1796 Stock Code: 95218
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First edition, second issue with a cancel title page; copies noted dated 1795. Carlyle was educated at Carlisle Grammar School and Cambridge, and while at Queens "profited from the instructions of a native of Baghdad, who passed in Britain under the name David Zamio. As a result, Carlyle became so proficient in oriental languages that he was appointed professor of Arabic on the resignation of Dr Craven in 1795" (Stanley Lane-Poole in ODNB). In 1799 Carlyle was appointed chaplain to Lord Elgin's mission to Constantinople and made an extensive tour through Asia Minor, Palestine, Greece, and Italy, collecting Greek and Syriac manuscripts for a proposed new version of the New Testament, which he did not live to accomplish. On his return to England in 1801 he was presented to the living of Newcastle upon Tyne, but his health had been undermined by the exertions of his expedition, and he died in 1804. Lane-Poole describes the present translation as "well-respected".

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Large octavo (226 x 182 mm) Early 19th-century half calf, marbled boards, neatly rebacked to style with the original red morocco label laid down, gilt rolls forming compartments, edges sprinkled blue.


Sheet of musical notation, text in Arabic types, engraved head- and tailpieces.


Lightly rubbed on the boards, corners professionally restored, internally a lightly browned and with occasional spotting, but overall a clean and carefully refurbished copy, presenting well.


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