• Antiquities  auction at Christies

    Sale 2232

    Antiquities

    11 December 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 201

    ROBERTS, David (1796-1864). The Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt and Nubia. London: Day & Son, 1855-1856.

    Price Realised  

    ROBERTS, David (1796-1864). The Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt and Nubia. London: Day & Son, 1855-1856.

    6 volumes in 3, 4o (285 x 200 mm). 6 title-pages with lithographed vignettes, portrait frontispiece of David Roberts in volume one, 2 maps and 241 tinted lithographed plates by Louis Haghe after David Roberts (occasional light spotting mainly on versos). Contemporary black morocco gilt, spines gilt, edges gilt (some minor rubbing). Provenance: S.K. Mulholland (bookplate, signature on front free endpaper).

    FIRST QUARTO EDITION of Robert's monumental work on the Holy Land and the Near East, originally issued in 41 folio parts over 7 years. After an apprenticeship to the Scottish house-painter Gavin Buego, Roberts became assistant scene painter at the Pantheon theatre in Edinburgh. He continued scene painting in Glasgow and finally, in 1821, was hired to work with Clarkson Stanfield at the Drury Lane theatre in London. By 1830, however, Roberts had firmly established himself as a topographical artist and was able to give up his work in the theatre. In 1838, inspired by his sense of artistic adventure, he made plans for a journey to the Near East. He departed in August 1839 for Alexandria and spent the remainder of the year in Cairo visiting the major tombs and sites of Egypt. The following February he journeyed to the Holy Land, making stops in Suez, Mount Sinai and Petra. He spent time in Gaza before entering Jerusalem and concluded his tour by spending several months visiting the biblical sites of the Holy Land. Abbey Travel 388. (3)


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