Author’s presentation copy to H. Eschke, German chargé d’affaires in Siam, 1899
Ernst HESSE-WARTEGG: SIAM. Das Reich des weissen Elefanten. With 1 folded map, 21 plates and 120 text illustrations. Leipzig: 1899.
Ernst von HESSE-WARTEGG: SIAM. Das Reich des weissen Elefanten [The Empire of the White Elephant]. With 1 folded multicolour map, 21 (stated 18) plates, whereof 2 coloured and 2 folded, and 120 b/w text illustrations. Leipzig: J. J. Weber 1899.
4to. Pages [I-V (pre title with dedication, title, preface, table of contents, bibliography)] VI, [1-3] 4-252, [4 (advertisements). Original publisher’s light brown cardboard binding gilt title on front board and spine, as well as coloured top edge.
First edition of Ernst Hesse-Wartegg’s collected and richly illustrated writings about contemporary Siam, this copy with an extensive author’s dedication written with black ink on pre title page.
Dedication: Presentation copy to Hans Hermann Eschke (1856-1904), the 1st German consul general to Singapore (also in charge of Siam): „To (…) Her Majesty’s chargé d’affaires in the Empire of the White Elephant, consul general Eschke, this New Year’s gift for 1902, with friendship and affection (…) 6th January 1902, by the author.“
Illustrations: The plates and text illustrations mainly reproduce photographies with portraits of members of the Royal family, as well as nobles, monks and „ordinary“ Siamese, with musical scores and written documents, furthermore photos of temples, palaces and other buildings of public importance, and finally of numerous scenes of daily life in Bangkok and the country side (with a special focus on elephants). The colour map of Siam and surrounding countries is enclosed, not bound in.
Also included is a bibliography consisting of 30 books about Siam from 1627-1899.
Condition: Cover heavily scratched and worn, numerous annotations with pencil, bookblock slightly cut due to later rebinding (with the original cover), in parts with little text loss, otherwise solid copy of this item, unique as presentation copy of importance for German and Siamese political history.