New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1881-1883. First American edition. Hardcover. Folio. X, 480, X, 476pp. Original blind-stamped crushed morocco with gold lettering on spines and front covers. Raised bands. All edges gilt. Dentelles. Marbled endpapers. Engraved frontispiece and additional engraved title-page in each volume. Authoritative and descriptive account of the geography, history and archaeology of the Levant, along with socio-anthropological observations of Jewish, Christian and Muslim life. Narrative text by eleven renowned British researchers, explorers and scholars (including Colonel Charles W. Wilson, Canon Tristram, Charles Warren, M. Rogers, and Major Claude Reignier Conder, R.E.), organized into 30 geographical sections covering Palestine, Egypt and Arabia. Extravagantly illustrated with 40 steel-plate engravings (incl. frontispieces & title-pages) after drawings by the masterful Harry Fenn and J. D. Woodward, over 600 wood engravings and two double-page color maps. Each steel-engraving is protected with a tissue-guard and printed on heavy paper. The many additional artists who gave their skillful hands to this work include: Henry Andrew Harper, C. Bertrand and Edward Brandard. Index. Bindings partly rubbed along edges, with minor abrasion to leather. Slight age-toning along paper margin. Deluxe bindings in overall good, interior in very good condition. g. Item #35048
Undertaken in 1864-65, this work includes the first official modern survey of Jerusalem - a survey inspired by philanthropist (and England's richest heiress) Angela Burdett-Coutts of the banking family, who wished to provide Jerusalem with a modern water system. During the survey, Colonel Wilson and his team were given permission to draw images of Muslim holy sites, such as the Dome of the Rock (Vol. I, pp.49-66), from which Christians had been previously banned (see Blackmer 1817).