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Political Case Maps of Asia

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John Cary. "A New Map of the East India Isles, From the Latest Authorities." London: J. Cary, 1801. Separately issued, folding map: dissected into six sections and mounted on linen. 18 x 20 1/4. Full, original hand color. Excellent condition.

This map was drawn, engraved and published by John Cary (fl. 1769-1836) in London for the 1801 edition of his New Universal Atlas. Amidst the turmoil of the Napoleonic wars, British Naval power was rising, and mapmaking as both art and science kept pace. Cary used existing maps and new surveys to provide his clients with the most up-to-date information on all parts of the world. Inaccuracies may be evident, but they reflect the knowledge in western Europe at the time they were made. This map shows the entire East Indies with excellent and geographically depicted detail. The original hand color adds a strong decorative appeal to this historic map. $450

James Wyld. "Map of Syria Ancient and Modern." London: J. Wyld, 1837-1840. Separately issued, folding map: dissected into 24 sections and mounted on linen. 38 x 24 1/2. Engraving. Original outline color. Very good condition. With original cloth slip case with printed label.

A map focusing on the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea, from just south of Gaza to just north of Tripoli, extending well into present-day Jordan and Syria. The growing power and expansionist plans of Mohammed Ali of Egypt led to conflict with the Sultan of Turkey in 1832-33, with Ali conquering Acre, Damascus, and Aleppo (to first two shown on this map). Under pressure from France, the Sultan was forced to grant Ali all of Syria in 1833. Unhappy with this result, and afraid of Ali's growing power, Turkey invaded Syria in 1839, but their army was completely defeated and the Turkish fleet in Alexandria surrendered without a fight. The British, fearful of Ali's power and wishing to support Turkey, together with Austria, Prussia and Russia, but against the wishes of France, demanded Ali give up Syria. When he refused, the British invaded Syria in September 1840 and forced Ali to abandon Syria in return for hereditary rule of Egypt. This map, issued during this crisis, shows the territory over which the conflict raged. $475

James Wyld. "Map of the Ottoman Empire The Black Sea and the Frontiers of Russia and Persia." London: J. Wyld, 1846-61. Separately issued, folding maps: dissected into 12 sections and mounted on linen. 16 x 22 1/4. Engraving. Original hand color. With original slip case with printed label.

The reign of Nicholas I of Russia (1825-55) was a period of great Russian expansion, especially to the south on either side of the Black Sea. This was also a period when the Turkish Empire was in decline, with challenges on all its borders. The aggressive stance of the Russians and the gradual rot of Turkey led to great concern on the parts of France and Britain and eventually the Crimean War in 1854. This map shows the Turkish Empire and its frontier probably just before the Crimean War. Special focus is on the Russian gains in the south, with each region dated as to the date of "acquisition" by Russia. This information on Russian gains is particularly interesting just north of the Danube (where the Crimean War started) and in the Caucasians, the ramifications of which are still being felt today. $375

Jean Jacques Nicolas Huot "Carte Geologique de la Crimee" Paris, 1853. Drawn for Anatole de Demidoff's narrative of a voyage to southern Russia in 1853. 21 sections. 23 1/4 x 36 1/4. Engraving by Pierre Tardieu. Original hand color. With British Admiralty. "Sevastopol Harbor." London, 1853. Credited to "the Russian survey of 1836." Published by the British Admiralty. Eight sections. 10 14/ x 21. Engraving by J. & C. Walker. Two separately issued, folding maps: dissected into sections and mounted on linen. Very good condition. Folding into buckram case, which has some water spots.

In 1853 Turkey declared war on Russia to commence the Crimean War. France and Britain became involved the following year with the occupation of the Crimea and the siege of Sebastopol. This pair, one a British chart of Sevastopol Harbor and one a French geological map of the Crimea, would have provided fascinating and useful information for those interested in the events taking place by the Black Sea. $375

William Shawe, F.R.G.S. "Turkey in Asia, with Russian Armenia and the Countries of the Caucasus." London & Liverpool: George Philip & Sons, ca. 1856-74. Separately issued, folding map: dissected into 24 sections and mounted on linen. 20 x 24 1/2. Lithograph. Original color. Excellent on front, but some foxing on backing linen. Folded into original blue cloth case stamped in gold. Case states that it is from "Philips' Series of Travelling Maps."

A very detailed map of the eastern half of the Turkish Empire. From the Dardanelles to Persia (Iran) and south to Lower Egypt and the Persian Gulf. The key calls for railroads to be shown, but the only railroads are shown in Egypt. Most of the information is topographic: rivers, roads, and elevations using cross-hatching. $225

Palestine Exploration Fund. "Map of Western Palestine from Surveys Conducted for the committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund by Lieuts. C.H. Conder and H.H. Kitchener, R.E. Reduced from the one inch map. Special Edition Illustrating the Divisions of the Natural Drainage and the Mountain Ranges According to 'An Introduction of the Survey of Western Palestine' By Trelawney Saunders." London, 1882. Separately issued map: dissected into 56 sections and mounted on two sheets of linen for folding. 34 x 65 3/4. Colored lithograph. Folded into original, embossed buckram slipcase. Case with wear, but map excellent condition.

Based on survey work done by the Palestine Exploration Fund during the 1870s, this crisp, detailed map represented the first accurate, modern representation of the regions known then as the Levant. Founded in 1865 by academics and clerics, the Palestine Exploration Fund often worked with British officers to carry out their geological and archaeological surveys, including a young Lieutenant H.H. Kitchener (later Khedive of Cairo and, more notably, Secretary of War, 1914-1916). His corps of engineers took detailed surveys of drainage and elevations of the lands between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River. With great precision, their data was translated by the cartographer into side bars, which line the edges of the map and correspond to the scale and orientation of the main image.

With this project, the Palestine Exploration Fund captured the region on the brink of a long, often painful series of transformations. On the eve of Zionism's rise (the first related immigration wave would begin in the 1880s), Palestine was still under Ottoman rule, as it had been since the sixteenth century. Throughout the tumultuous history that followed, the Palestine Exploration Fund has been a constant presence, conducting archaeological, geological, and anthropological investigations in modern-day Israel, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon. A significant survey made at a critical point in regional history, this map is a fascinating first chapter in the turbulent story of the modern Middle East. $425

Church Missionary Society. "Missionary Tour in India." London: George Philip & Son, ca. 1900. Separately issued folding map mounted on linen. 25 3/4 x (assembled; 39 x 29, each sheet). Chromolithograph. With marble endpapers. Light wear at folds; otherwise, excellent condition.

Published by the Church Missionary Society, an Anglican organization founded in the midst of the Wesleyan revival of the late eighteenth century, this map highlights the missions focus that featured prominently in many Protestant churches of the nineteenth century. Produced about a century after the organization's founding, it outlines a journey presumably taken by one of its own missionaries. Beginning its outreach first in West Africa, the Church Missionary Society quickly moved into Southeast Asia, arriving in India around 1815. In addition to establishing traditional churches and bishoprics, missionaries focused on medical missions, founding hospitals all over the country. The organization continues to operate worldwide from its headquarters in London. $75

"Stanford's Map Of The Seat Of War In The Far East, 1904." London: Edward Stanford, 14 March 1904. Separately issued, folding map: dissected into 32 sections and mounted on linen. 30 1/2 x 32 3/4. Lithographed in color. Excellent condition. Folding into original cloth covers with printed label.

A map showing the "seat of war" of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05. With the beginning of the trans-Siberian Railway in 1891, the Russians became very interested in short-cut routes to Vladivostok through Mongolia and also in a southern harbor as an all-year railroad terminus. In 1896, China gave Russia the right to build and operate the Chinese Eastern Railway across northern Manchuria, and then, two years later, Russia extorted a 25 year lease from China to the southern Liaotung Peninsula, with its ice-free Port Arthur. Tensions with Japan, which was concerned by Russian encroachments in the region, exacerbated by Russia's continued involvement in Korea and Manchuria, led in February 1904 to the Russo-Japanese War. This map, showing the region of conflict, was issued just a month after the war was declared. It highlights the Russian railroads and shows the southern Liaotung Peninsula as Russian territory, both on the main map and in a more detailed inset. The war ended with a Russian defeat and pull back from the region. $450

George Gill, F.R.G.S. "Gill's 'Cartographic' India and Surrounding States with Railways and Border Trade Routes." London: Geo. Gill & Sons, ca. 1905. Separately issued folding map: dissected into 64 sections and mounted on linen in four parts. 78 1/2 x 58 (assembled; 39 x 29, each sheet). Chromolithograph. With marble endpapers. Some wear along folds, especially in lower quadrants; with tack holes in corners. Some light smudging; in southeast quadrant, several small smudges of blue ink (apparently printer's errors). Overall, very good condition. Click on underlined titles to view photos of: northwestern quadrant, southwestern quadrant, southeastern quadrant,and northeastern quadrant.

Brilliantly colored and sharply drawn, this map illustrates India and the surrounding region as it existed during the first decade of the twentieth century. Still occupied by Great Britain, the regions that would later become India, Pakistan, and Burma are shaded to indicate their colonial status. To the northeast, the pre-republic Chinese Empire encompasses Tibet and Mongolia, abutting the pre-Soviet Russian Empire. Between British India and Russian Bokhara (modern Uzbekistan), Afghanistan sits as a buffer for imperialist powers. Stretching along the east from the Kizyl-Kum desert to the Maldive Islands and bounded on the west by the Mekong River, this map encompasses a region on the cusp of intense change: by 1911, the Qing dynasty gave way to the Republic of China; under the wing of the newly-formed Soviet Union, Uzbekistan was formed in 1924; before World War II, Thailand would emerge from Siam; and in 1949, Great Britain ceded independence to the nations of Pakistan and India. The political bent of the map is indicated in the references section, where Gill states, "The prominence of the names indicates the comparative importance of places, either as regard population commerce, history, or strategic position." Also of considerable interest is the transportation network, including railways, canals, and "frontier trade routes." $450

After Palestine Exploration Fund. "Carte de la Palestine Ancienne et Moderne avec le Sud du Liban et de Anti-Liban et les regions situées á l'est du Jourdain et de la Mer Morte pour servir à l'étude de la Bible." Paris: Letouzey and Ané, ca. 1910. Separately issued folding map, mounted on linen. Lithograph. 26 1/4 x 36 1/4. Toned paper; some chipping at edges, tack holes in margins; some scattered light stains. Otherwise, good condition. With insets: "Environs de Jérusalem," "Carte de Peninsule Sanaitique," "Plan de Jerusalem."

A detailed, serviceable map based on the numerous expeditions of the Palestine Exploration Fund. Founded in 1865 by academics and clerics, the Palestine Exploration Fund often worked with British officers to carry out their geological and archaeological surveys. Displaying the detail characteristic of PEF maps, this map also notes place names from the New Testament (printed in red) as well as other ancient (non-biblical) place names (printed in blue). Probably tacked on the wall for classroom purposes, this map remains a valuable document for scholars of both the ancient and recent history of the Middle East. $175

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