Get a glimpse of 1848 globe with 'Debai' on it

  • Khaleej Times
  • 9 November 2017
  • Afkar Abdullah

The 64.5cm globe, with 18-inch height in stand, is on display at the Antiquarian INLIBRIS Gilhofer, an Austrian stall specialised in the collection of autographs, manuscripts, and valuable books.

The first printed record of Abu Dhabi and Dubai on maps - an engraved terrestrial globe showing "Debai" (Dubai) on the Gulf coast, 15 years after Al Maktoum dynasty took charge in 1833 - is attracting visitors at the ongoing Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF).

The 64.5cm globe, with 18-inch height in stand, is on display at the Antiquarian INLIBRIS Gilhofe, an Austrian stall specialised in collection of autographs, manuscripts and valuable books.

"The globe is engraved by Chas Malby and was manufactured in 1848 and is available for sale with cost of €50,000 (Dh213,548). It clearly shows the existence of Dubai which used to be called Debai before 1833. This large and rare globe seems to be manufactured for navigation use," said Hugo Wetscherek, CEO of Antiquarian INLIBRIS Gilhofer.

Travelogue on Sharjah, Dubai

Many visitors, especially Emiratis, are also attracted by the first edition of a travelogue about Sharjah and Dubai in the pavilion. "It is a genuine copy of the first edition of travelogue handwritten by the Gasparo Balbi, Venetian merchant and pearl seeker. It contains information useful to the contemporary merchants, including rates of exchange, duties, travel routes and distances as well as a detailed account of the pearling grounds in the Arabian Gulf," Wetscherek said.

Balbi recorded names of places along the coast of modern Qatar, the UAE and Oman, and is the first one to refer to many of these places using the names by which they are known today. The cost of this edition is €150,000 (Dh640,645).

"Our customers are made up of institutions, among them are renowned international universities and major state libraries. A small selection of libraries and archives are regularly served by us. We keep contact with private customers at book fairs such as SIBF."