Palmer, E[dward] H[enry]. The Desert of the Exodus. Journeys on Foot in the Wilderness of the Forty Years' Wanderings [...].

Cambridge, Deighton, Bell & Co., 1871.

4to. 2 vols. XX, 280 pp. (4), 281-576 pp. With 5 lithographed folding maps (2 in colour), 2 lithographed frontispieces (one in original hand colour, one tinted), and 14 lithographed plates, 12 of which tinted. Contemporary giltstamped full calf with the arms of the University of Glasgow to front covers and spine and giltstamped spine-labels. Marbled endpapers. All edges marbled.


First edition. Lively account of the first extensive exploration of the Sinai desert performed entirely on foot. The English orientalist Palmer was engaged in 1869 to join the survey of Sinai, undertaken by the Palestine Exploration Fund, and followed up this work in the next year by exploring the desert of El-Tih, Idumaea, and Moab in company with Charles Drake. They completed this journey on foot and without escort, making friends among the Bedouins and Arab sheikhs, to whom Palmer was known as Abdallah Effendi. After a visit to the Lebanon and to Damascus, where he made the acquaintance of Sir Richard Burton, then consul there, he returned to England in 1870 by way of Constantinople and Vienna.

Palmer's report discusses the Sinai survey, the geography of the area, camp life, marches through the wilderness, and encounters with Arab tribes. It includes descriptions of Saint Catherine's Monastery as well as of Petra, with maps of the Sinai Peninsula, the Negeb, and the Moab, as well as two maps from the Sinai survey showing topographic views of Mount Sinai and Jebel Serbál. The charming tinted plates display desert and mountain views, ruins, hieroglyphs, towns, caves and churches.

Bindings very slightly rubbed. Small tears to 2 maps; otherwise in excellent condition. Prize copy awarded to Joannes M. Littlejohn, a student of Hebrew at the University of Glasgow, by Jacob Robertson; a commemorative bookplate to front pastedown of volume I, dated 1 May 1885; a handwritten note by Robertson to flyleaf of volume II.


Blackmer 1238. Röhricht 3126, no. 5. OCLC 1013449009.