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THOMSETT, Richard Gillham.

With the Peshawar Column, Tirah Expeditionary Force.

London, Digby, Long & Co., 1899 Stock Code: 140707
£1,500.00

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Notes

First and sole edition of this colourful and conspicuously scarce eye-witness account of the Tirah campaign (1897-98). Thomsett (b. 1857) was a lieutenant-colonel with the RAMC, had served in Afghanistan in 1878-80 and was later in Egypt (1882) and South Africa (1902). The Peshawar Column, under Brig.-Gen. A. G. Hammond VC, acted as one of the flanking forces to the Tirah Field Force, charged with burning Afridi villages, destroying watchtowers and confiscating winter forage; they also re-opened the Khyber Pass in the winter of 1898, to which Thomsett devotes a chapter, noting that the weather was "nice and balmy" and campaigning not all hardship: "while sitting down enjoying my sandwiches and cold tea soon after arrival, I noticed the wild thyme growing plentifully, and also that small crabs found their way up from the Khyber stream on to the grass where I was sitting". While stationed at Landi Kotal he gives an account of the ambush of piquets of the Oxfordshire Light Infantry, described in the chapter "Stirring Times, etc". An online search of institutional libraries cites just seven locations: British Library, Oxford, Cambridge, Scotland, London Library, NY Public Library, and Minnesota.

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Description

Octavo. Original red vertical-rib cloth, gilt-lettered spine, black-lettered front cover, paired blind fillet and decorative wraparound bands to spine and front cover, publisher's monogram to back cover, pale green floral-patterned endpapers.

Condition

Binding skilfully refurbished, extremities of spine and corners consolidated, gilt lettering retouched, peripheral toning to letterpress. A very good copy, bright and square, with the publisher's 16-page catalogue at the end (dated September 1899).

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