9 December 2009,
New York, Rockefeller Plaza
Price Realised USD 12,500
VIDAL, Emeric Essex (1778-1861). Picturesque illustrations of Buenos Ayres and Monte Video. London: R. Ackermann, 1820 [text watermarked 1818; plates 1820].
Large 4o (334 x 275 mm.). 24 hand-colored lithographs by G. Maile, T. Sutherland, G. Bluck, and D. Havell after E.E. Vidal (4 double-page) (some light browning.) Contemporary cloth lettered and decorated in gilt, edges gilt (rebacked, preserving original spine, corners worn). Provenance: Hugh Blair Grigsby (bookplate).
"THE ONLY NOTABLE COLOR PLATE BOOK IN ENGLISH DEALING WITH THE ARGENTINE" (Tooley)
FIRST EDITION, FIRST ISSUE IN BOOK FORM, FIRST ISSUE BINDING, with plates watermarked 1820 and text watermarked 1818. Originally issued in monthly parts on either ordinary (elephant quarto) or large-paper, and then in plain boards on either ordinary (as here) or large-paper, then "half leather" boards with a pictured label of Vidal, and then red cloth decorated in blind, lettered in gilt.
English interest in South America flourished after the capture of Buenos Aires by Commodore Sir Home Popham and Colonel Beresford in 1806. These two "privateers" sent booty back to London with a reported value of £1,100,000. Ackermann exploited the widespread and substantial interest in South American affairs that these events had aroused, through a number of fine publications including Vidal's views. Vidal served in the navy from 1808, and, from 1801 to 1802, as a secretary to the Admiral Lambert on H.M.S. Vigo stationed at St Helena. Abbey Travel 698; Tooley, 495; Sabin 99460; Colas 3000.
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