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128830
MELLISS, John Charles.

St. Helena....

A physical, historical, and topographical description of the island, including its geology, fauna, flora, and meteorology. The botanical plates from original drawings by Mrs J. C. Melliss.

Availability: In stock

Published: London L. Reeve & Co., 1875

Stock Code: 128830

£1,375
OR On display in 43 Dover Street

Notes

First edition of this "landmark book which established Melliss as the first historian of the island and included a section on natural history intended as a precursor for an ambitious broader study of the African islands of the southern Atlantic" (Natural History Museum). Melliss, a military officer with the Royal Engineers, was born on St. Helena and later found employment with the colonial government of the island, where he lived with his wife, who provided the botanical illustrations for this work. Whilst there he worked on various projects including the restoration of Longwood House, the residence of Napoleon. This work provides important documentary evidence of a unique flora under threat as it was being heavily modified by the island's inhabitants and a number of species were in the process of becoming extinct.

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Description

Large octavo (250 x 174 mm). Mid-20th-century red half morocco by Hatchards, titles to spine in gilt, Napoleonic floral design, monogram, eagle, and bees in gilt to spine, red marbled paper sides and endpapers, top edge gilt.

Illustrations

Mounted colour lithographic frontispiece with tissue guard, 7 similar plates, 45 further lithographic plates mainly of botanical subjects, 3 maps of which one folding and one to the text, folding plate of geological cross-sections.

Condition

Library stamp of Lewis W MacNaughton to front free endpaper and half-title. Minor rubbing to spine, wear to tips, foxing to endmatter; a very good copy.

Delivery

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