Mint set of the "Lotus" edition with the fabulous Art Nouveau bindings

Brinkley, F.

Oriental Series. Japan [and] China. [the rare "Lotus"-edition].

Published 1901
Item ID 77619

excl. VAT

Boston and Tokyo, J. B. Millet, 1901-1902. Twelve volumes in twelve. 8vo (23.1 x 15.7 cm). 3752 pp.; 255 plates, of which 115 monochrome and 114 in full colour - all with printed tissue guards, and 26 lithographed, captioned on the plates; three maps, of which two very large, multi-folded and in full colour. Uniform original full dark green morocco. Spines with three raised bands, gilt, pink-and-red inlay morocco lotus vignette and gilt title. Boards with gilt-lined borders and pink-and-red inlay morocco lotuses.

A fabulous, extremely well-preserved set of the most sought-after, limited edition, aptly called the "Lotus" edition. Just 26 sets of this edition were made. This one being "number" K. The work deals with the history, people, arts and crafts, and nature of Japan (nine volumes), and China (three volumes). It includes many fine and unique illustrations of landscapes, people, events, birds, art, etc., of which several (at least two per volume) printed on silk. Also included are two fine large, full-colour maps, of Japan and China, lists of emperors, etc. Each volume contains many additional notes and an index. The author, Francis Brinkley (1841-1912) was an Anglo-Irish newspaper owner, editor and scholar who resided in Meiji-period Japan for over 40 years, where he was the author of numerous books on Japanese culture, art and architecture and an English-Japanese Dictionary. He was also known as Frank Brinkley or as Captain Francis Brinkley and was the great uncle of Cyril Connolly. In 1866, on his way to Hong Kong, Brinkley visited Nagasaki and witnessed a duel between two samurai warriors. Once the victor had slain his opponent, he immediately covered him in his haori and "knelt down with hands clasped in prayer". It is said that Brinkley was so impressed by the conduct of the Japanese warrior that this enticed him to live in Japan permanently. In 1867 Captain Brinkley returned to Japan, never again to return home. Attached to the British-Japanese Legation, and still an officer in the Royal Artillery, he was assistant military attaché to the Japanese Embassy. He resigned his commission in 1871 to accept the post of foreign advisor to the new Meiji government, and taught artillery techniques to the new Imperial Japanese Navy at the Naval Gunnery School. He mastered the Japanese language soon after his arrival, and both spoke and wrote it well. In 1878 he was invited to teach mathematics at the Imperial College of Engineering, which later became part of Tokyo Imperial University, remaining in this post for two and a half years. In the same year he married Yasuko Tanaka, a daughter of a former samurai from the Mito clan. Interracial marriages could be registered under Japanese law from 1873. Brinkley sought, but was refused, permission by the British Legation to register his marriage in order that his wife would have undisputed claim to British nationality (she forfeited her Japanese nationality by marrying him). He fought this refusal and eventually succeeded by appealing to the British judiciary, with the help of some influential friends. They were the parents of two daughters and a son. In 1881 until his death, Brinkley owned and edited The Japan Mail newspaper (later merged with The Japan Times), receiving financial support from the Japanese government, and consequently maintaining a pro-Japanese stance. The newspaper was perhaps the most influential and widely read English language newspaper in the Far East. The first two volumes are dated (copyright) 1901; all others are dated 1902. A perfect set, practically free of blemishes. The beauty of these amazing bindings can hardly be denied.

Very flexible return policy
Secure payments by Adyen
Sent in 2 business days with Track & Trace
We are members of ILAB-LILA and NVvA

Recently Viewed

Advanced Search