Mayer, Luigi. A Selection of the Most Interesting of Sir Robert Ainslie's Celebrated Collection of Views in Turkey in Europe, and in Asia.

London, T. Bensley f. R. Bowyer, 1811.

Folio (340 x 490 mm). 2 ff, 24 coloured aquatints (1 folding). Contemporary half calf with giltstamped red morocco label to marbled front cover, spine rebacked and gilt.


"The plates in this selection are not re-engraved, but plates available from the stock originally printed for Bowyer, with new title page" (Atabey). Includes views of Constantinople, the Voivode palace of Bucharest, Tripoli and Tortosa, a mosque in Laodicea, as well as antiquities from the Eolian Islands and Ephesus.

The German-Italian artist Luigi Mayer (1755-1803) was one of the foremost late 18th-century European painters of the Ottoman Empire. He was a close friend of Sir Robert Ainslie, British ambassador to Turkey between 1776 and 1792, and the bulk of his paintings and drawings during this period were commissioned by him. Mayer travelled extensively throughout the Ottoman Empire and became well known for his sketches and paintings of panoramic landscapes of ancient sites from the Balkans to Turkey and Egypt, particularly ancient monuments and the Nile. Many of the works were amassed in Ainslie's collection, which was later presented to the British Museum, providing a valuable insight into the Middle East of that period.


Formerly in the Ottoman collection of the Swiss industrialist Herry W. Schaefer.


Occasional insignificant brownstaining.


Atabey 790. Chatzipanagioti-S. 631. Hage Chahine 56. Cf. Blackmer 1100. Abbey 369.