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LANSDOWNE, Henry Charles Keith Petty-Fitzmaurice, fifth marquess of.

Speeches of the Marquis of Lansdowne, Viceroy and Governor General of India.

Calcutta: Office of the Superintendent of Government Printing India, 1894 Stock Code: 116668
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Rare collection of speeches by one of the last Victorian viceroys of India

First and only edition, one of 110 copies, rare: among British and Irish institutional libraries Library Hub locates only the copy at the British Library; WorldCat adds a single copy worldwide, at Bibliothèque de documentation internationale contemporaine at Nanterre (described in a note as "Rel. arm." - presumably "reliure armorial" - i.e. an armorial binding like ours). The printer's note at the end of volume II reads: "G.I.C.P.O. - No. 72 P.S. to V. - 15.2.94 - 110": Government of India Central Printing Office, the date and the number of copies printed (110).

This collection of speeches, given while Lansdowne (1845-1927) was governor-general of India (1888-1894), was almost certainly a valedictory publication commemorating the conclusion of his tenure in office, and intended for presentation to a select coterie of friends and officials. In subject matter they range widely from addresses to such bodies as the Bombay School of Art, Mahomedan Literary Society and chambers of commerce, by way of various unveilings, banquets, and durbars, to the opening of hospitals, colleges, water works, and railways. Riddick sums up succinctly the highpoints of his career in India:"Lansdowne concluded a boundary settlement with Afghanistan, put down a minor rebellion at Manipur, and ably handled problems regarding Indian currency and control of opium". His speeches give a fascinating insight into the duties of a British viceroy during the heyday of the Raj. "With its remarkable combination of popular, patrician, and imperial elements, his career graphically symbolized the significant political role played by Britain's old aristocracy until well into the twentieth century" (ODNB).

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2 volumes, octavo ( 212 x 131 mm). Contemporary (almost certainly "native") brown morocco, spines with decorative gilt roll tool at head and tail, gilt ruled either side of the raised bands and roll tooled on the bands themselves, sides with concentric gilt panels, gilt Lansdowne arms on front covers, gilt roll tool turn-ins, brown coated endpapers.


Covers of volume I just slightly sprung. An excellent set, unopened in places.


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