Maggs Bros Ltd

Seiyo Bunkenroku [Heard and Seen in the West].

MURATA Fumio editor (Meiji 2 and Meiji 4 [1869 & 1871].)

£2200.00  [First Edition]

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First edition. Two parts in 8 volumes, complete. Three colour woodblock maps (two folding), one folding plate and several woodcut illustrations. Fukuruto-ji. Original covers with printed title-slips, generally in very good condition throughout, preserved in modern chitsu. Tokyo, Tenminkan.

Published in two instalments of 4 volumes each, this is an important collection of facts about Britain based on the findings of the Takenouchi mission of 1862. Murata describes Britain and the British (their love of collecting flowers and plants, food, drink, scenery, natural history), and their history (from the Romans to relations with Spain, Holland and America). London is described in some detail (St. Pauls Cathedral, Buckingham Palace, Westminster, hospitals etc) and Murata also makes some general remarks about Europe, it's history and religion. The map shows the extent of the Russian and the British Empire together with the respective distances at sea. The appendix at the end of the final volumes lists the countries in the world, their form of government, capital, size, population, as well as their products. The covers are embossed in English with the words: 'Edited by Murata'. This work povided an essential impetus behind the economic and political reforms untertaken in the early Meiji Period. The folding plate shows the largest ship in the world. There is a detailed map of England as well a map of the Suez Canal. Rare. Not in Kerlen. One copy in OCLC.

Stock Code: 188851