SOLTYKOFF, ALEXIS. 1806-1859.
Indian Scenes and Characters: Sketched from Life. London: Smith, Elder, 1859.
Folio (620 x 440 mm). [iv] ll printed recto only. Additional tinted lithographed title with vignette and 15 plates all after Soltykoff by de Rudder or J. Trayer, each with accompanying letterpress description. Cloth-backed original printed boards. Disbound, chipping and tears to text leaves, plates slightly trimmed down, 3 with repaired edge-tears, one touching image, light dust-soiling, covers worn.
Provenance: Christie's, September 21, 2000, lot 383.
FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH of one of the greatest of all Indian plate books. The work was dedicated to Lord Stanley (the Secretary of State for India), and edited by the well-known orientalist and diplomat, Edward Backhouse Eastwick [1814-1883]. Soltykoff's wealth accounts for the exceptionally fine execution of these lithographs, produced after drawings he made during travels in India with his brother in 184143 and 184446.
Images comprise: title vignette, "Gardens of Amber, near Jaypore"; "Fishers on the Coast of Coromandel"; "Festival of the Goddess Dourga at Calcutta"; "Harem Carriage of the King of Delhi"; "The Maha-Rajah-Hindoo-Rao-Bahadoer"; "Mountaineers of the Himalaya"; "Hunting Leopards ready for the chase"; "Cavalcade of Sikh Chieftans on Elephants"; "Sikh Chieftans"; "The King of Gwalior and some of his Courtiers"; "View of the Palace at Jaypore"; "A Fakeer of Rajpootana"; "Fakeers"; "Arab and negro in the service of the Guickwar"; "House and Gardens, Bombay"; "Dance of the Nautch Girls."