OLIVER, Samuel Pasfield (1838-1907). On and Off Duty, being leaves from an Officer's Note-book. London: W. H. Allen and Co., 1881. 8° (245 x 180mm). EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED with 40 pen-and-ink, pencil or watercolour sketches on paper, 2 photographs, 3 maps, 1 proof engraving, and printed illustrations. (Occasional light spotting.) Half-red morocco (upper board detached).
FIRST EDITION, EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED WITH MANY FINE SKETCHES BY THE AUTHOR, recording scenes from his travels between 1860 to 1865. Oliver, a geographer, antiquary and Lieutenant in the Royal Artillery, first went to China in 1860. When the British Embassy was established in Peking the following year, he visited the capital and from there toured through Japan. After a posting to Mauritius, he accompanied Major-general Johnstone on an expedition to Madagascar in 1862, to congratulate King Radama II on his accession. Spending months on the island studying its history and ethnology, Oliver also made extensive studies of the flora, fauna and geology of the Mascarene islands. This copy includes the proof engraving for his drawing of lava which appeared in John Wesley Judd's Volcanoes... (1881). Grandidier, 3787.
S.P. OLIVER. Madagascar and the Malagasy. With Sketches in the Provinces of Tamatave, Betanimena, and Ankova. London: Day and Son, . 8° (252 x 165mm). 24 tinted lithographic full-page plates by Day and Son after Oliver, map and plan. (Some light marginal surface soiling, only occasionally touching sky areas of plates.) 20th-century half calf. First edition of Oliver's description of Madagascar, 'the standard English authority on the subject' (DNB), based on his diaries. Cf. Grandidier 3784. [And]: OLIVER, S. P. Madagascar. An Historical and Descriptive Account of the Island and its Former Dependencies. London: Macmillan and Company, 1886. 2 volumes. Grandidier, 3792. (4)