25 September 2001
[Sir Ernest Shackleton (1874-1922)]
Samuel Taylor COLERIDGE (1722-1834) The Ancient Mariner. London, Nottingham, etc.: Boots Limited, [no date but circa 1910]. 12mo (13.2 x 10.3cm.). Title printed in red and black. Frontispiece after May Sandheim. Original purple reversed calf, title blocked in gilt on upper cover within a blind-stamped roundel, titled in gilt on spine, yapp edges, top edge gilt.
John King Davis (lengthy presentation inscription, quoting Robert Service 'You may recall that sweep of savage splendour/That land that measures each man at his worth/And ful [sic.] in memory, half fierce, half tender,/The brotherhood of men that know the South', dated 'Christmas 1910', to:); Sir Ernest Shackleton; Lewis Raphael Rickinson (signature'Engr Cdr L R Rickinson R.N.'); and thence by descent to his granddaughter, the present owner.
A fine memento, recalling both of Shackleton's great expeditions. John King Davis (1884-1967) came to Antarctic exploration by accident: 'A chance meeting with a friend who was on his way to inspect an exhibition of polar equipment for Ernest Shackleton's Nimrod expedition inspired his imagination and led to his appointment as Chief Officer of Nimrod...At the age of 25 he suceeded Captain F.P. Evans as Master of Nimrod on the return voyage to London. (Poulson & Myres, British Polar Exploration and Research London, 2000, p.504). Following the expedition's return he helped Shackleton wind up the affairs of the expedition and accompanied him on his lecture tour. The present work was given by Davis to Shackleton during this period. Davis was unwilling to take part in Shackleton's next expedition (he had just returned from the South with Mawson),but when called upon he accepted command of the Aurora Antarctic Relief Expedition which rescued the Ross Sea shore party.
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