# 2130

DWIGHT, Nathaniel

A short but comprehensive system of the geography of the world : by way of question and answer.

$375.00 AUD

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Principally designed for children and common schools. Boston : Printed by Manning and Loring, for West & Greenleaf, No. 56 Cornhill, 1801. Sixth edition. Small octavo, original quarter calf (short split towards tail) over papered boards (stained and marked), front and rear paste down and endpapers with old water stains, original owner’s inscription on front free endpaper, 215 pp (binding tight, scattered foxing and toned throughout). A fair copy.

A non-illustrated American child’s geography which proved extremely popular as a standard school primer around the close of the eighteenth and beginning of the nineteenth century, and was printed in numerous editions by various publishing houses in New England and New York. The convenient alphabetical index includes entries on Spitzbergen (or East Greenland), West Greenland, Iceland, Lapland, Amazonia, Corea, Louisiana, Negroland (roughly equivalent to Niger), Oriental Islands (Japan, Ladrones, Celebes, Philippines, Moluccas, Banda Islands, Amboyna, Sunda Islands, Borneo, Sumatra, Java, Ceylon), Indostan, India (within and beyond the Ganges) and China. The glaring omission is Oceania: there is no mention of New Guinea, New Holland, New Zealand or any other islands in the South Seas.

The section on Iceland asserts that its people are similar to those who inhabit Greenland, that they are ‘sober and religious, are very much attached to their country, and think they could be nowhere else so happy‘. The language is that formerly spoken in Sweden, ‘preserved pure‘. The entry also mentions the country’s Lutheran religion, its volcanoes and geysers and its natural produce.

This edition not recorded in Australian collections.