Egypt in 309 beautiful illustrations, many in colour

Valeriani, Domenico / Segato, Girolamo. Nuova illustrazione istorico-monumentale del basso e dell'alto Egitto. Including: Atlante monumentale del basso e dell'alto Egitto.

Florence, Paolo Fumagalli, 1836-1837 (text) & 1837-1841 (plates).

2 text vols. (8vo) and 2 plate vols. (large folio). (2), 491, (1), (4) pp. 788, (6) pp. text. With engraved portrait of Segato as frontispiece in the first text volume and the plate volumes with 160 engraved and aquatint plates (7 double-page), including 51 tinted and/or coloured by a contemporary hand; many plates contain multiple illustrations, making 309 illustrations in total. Contemporary green (text vols.) and brown (plates vols.) half morocco, sewn on 3 recessed cords (text vols.) and 4 tapes (plates vols.), "agate" chemical marbled sides.


First edition of a beautiful series of illustrations of Egypt and classical Egyptian monuments, with the accompanying text volumes giving detailed information on each illustration. The illustrations show maps, costumes and views of both ancient and modern Egypt. The scientist and Egyptologist Girolamo Segato (1792-1836) began working on a new description and depiction of Egypt, selecting illustrations from the works of Denon, Grau and Rosellini, and also including his own original drawings. After his premature death his collaborator Domenico Valeriani finished the work and provided the accompanying texts.

Segato is best known for his technique similar to mummification, this technique of petrification remains mysterious, despite numerous studies and attempts to imitate, as he destroyed all his documentation before his death.

The text and plates volumes with marginal foxing throughout, minor except in the preliminary leaves. Otherwise in good condition. The binding slightly rubbed along the extremities, damage to the upper right corner of the first plates volume, resulting in a stain on the front endpapers, and the upper half of the sides on the second plate volume faded, otherwise good and structurally sound.


Blackmer 1521 (plate volumes only, erroneously noting 159 plates). Blackmer sales cat. 984 (160 plates). Ibrahim-Hilmy II, 301. ICCU 0154707. For Segato: Almagia, "Segato, Girolamo" in: Treccani Enciclopedia Italiana (online ed.).