[Dow, Alexander / Bergier, Claude François (transl.)]. Dissertation sur les moeurs, les usages, le langage, la religion et la philosophie des Hindous, suivie d'une exposition generale et succincte du Gouvernement & de l'etat actuel de l'Hindostan.

Paris, Noel-Jacques Pissot, 1769.

8vo. XXIV, 213, (1) pp. With 2 folding engraved plates. Contemporary full mottled calf with giltstamped red morocco label to prettily gilt spine. Marbled endpapers. All edges red.


First edition thus. Very rare French translation of two essays by the Scottish-born East India Company officer and orientalist Alexander Dow (1735-79), first published within his "History of Hindostan, translated from the Persian of Ferishta" (1768). The present edition omits the text of the world history of Firishta that Dow had presented in his book, giving only his "dissertation concerning the religion and philosophy of the Brahmins" as well as an outline of the then-current state of India, partly taken from Dow's preface. Contains two folding plates, engraved by P. L. Charpentier, showing the Sanskrit alphabet and the metre employed in the Vedas. Re-issued in 1780.

Early 19th century bookseller label of A. Claudin, Paris, pasted head-over-heels to lower pastedown. Binding very attractively preserved. Excepting the Sir Thomas Phillipps copy, sold at Sotheby's in 1977, this is the second copy known in trade records.


Lanson III, 8161. OCLC 34570575.