9 December 2009
TURNER, Samuel (1749?-1802). An Account of an Embassy to the Court of the Teshoo Lama, in Tibet; containing a narrative of a journey through Bootan, and part of Tibet. London: W. Bulmer and Co., 1800.
4o (325 x 261 mm). Folding engraved map of Tibet by J. Walker, one double-page map of Tibetan characters and 12 plates by James Basire after Samuel Davis (plates spotted, some browning). Contemporary calf (rebacked, wear and darkening to edges).
FIRST EDITION of the first and only account of Tibet written by an Englishman until Bogle and Manning's narratives were published seventy-five years later. Turner's Embassy to the Court of the Teshoo Lama is "without comparison the most valuable work that has yet appeared on Thibet" (Pinkerton, quoted in Cox). For many years "the intriguing detail and the romantic image" conveyed by Turner's account "proved irresistible to a long succession of freelance travellers" (Keay). Cox I, 346; Keay The Honourable Company London, 1991; Lust 208; Yakushi T140.
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