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STACY, Lewis Robert.

The Narrative of Lieutenant Colonel L. R. Stacy.

Whilst in the Brahooe Camp, inducing the Submission of Naseer Khan, only Son of the Late Meer Meerab Khan, Khan of Khelat; and in the Subsequent Operations of General Nott's Army in its March to and its Return from Cabul.

Serampore: from the Serampore Press, 1844 Stock Code: 122379
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First and only edition, scarce, "printed though not published for private circulation among the author's friends"; the clipped bookseller's catalogue description present here states that only 20 copies were printed, a number corroborated by University of California (Berkeley) and Bodleain; apart from these copies only two other locations are cited by WorldCat among international libraries (British Library, Calgary), and this is the only copy traced in commerce. Stacy, of the 43rd Bengal Native Infantry, served as interpreter during treaty negotiations with the Khan of Khelat, which safeguarded British lines of communication during Nott's invasion in May 1842. His account "does not profess to give a general view of the proceedings beyond the Indus, or of the military movements of the army to which Col. Stacy was attached, but is confined to those transactions in which the author was personally engaged" (preface). Stacy also wrote another account, entitled Narrative of Services in Beloochistan and Affghanistan, which is far more common; the present work must rank as one of the rarest firsthand accounts of the First Anglo-Afghan War and its aftermath.

Provenance: from the collection of Brigadier General Harry Biddulph, with his ownership inscription dated 1942 to the front pastedown; acquired by him from William George's Sons, booksellers, with their pencilled inscription to the front free endpaper. Biddulph (1872-1952), of the Royal Engineers, was awarded the DSO in 1917, invested CMG in 1919, and CB in 1919; in 1928 he was appointed Director of the Works and Buildings, Air Ministry. He was the author of Early Indian Campaigns and the Decorations Awarded for Them (1914), as well as various pamphlets on military engineering and Bible criticism. His father was General Sir Robert Biddulph (1835-1918), noted military administrator who was at Lucknow during the Indian Mutiny, and was later commander-in-chief, Gibraltar (1893-1900).

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Octavo in half-sheets. Original dark green fine-diaper cloth, spine ruled in blind and lettered in gilt, sides with large ornamental blind-stamped panel, yellow surface-paper endpapers. Housed in a custom made red quarter morocco slipcase and matching chemise.


Spine slightly cocked, superficial fraying to extremities of spine, short splits to joint-ends, a few marks to sides, tips bumped; early-20th-century bookseller's catalogue description (William George's Sons) mounted to front pastedown, front inner hinge partially cracked at gutter of title page, but remaining firm, a few trivial spots to contents, pp. 160-1 slightly marked and abraded in gutter, contemporary neat corrections following the printed errata. A very good copy, complete with the errata leaf.


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