# 43950

NUSRET ALI KHAN DEHLEVÎ

[ISLAMIC TRAVEL ACCOUNT OF CHINA] Çin û Mâçin

$2,800.00 AUD

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[=South China]. Constantinople :  Hursid Matbaasi, AH 1318 [1900]. Octavo (200 x 140 mm), original pictorial wrappers (a little faded, chipped and foxed), pp. 42, illustrated with 10 b/w lithographed plates, and one smaller Chinese city plan; text in Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters); some foxing to outermost leaves, otherwise internally very good.

First and only edition of this rare account of a journey through China made in the 1870s by Dihlevî, a nineteenth-century traveller writing in the early period of Ottoman travel literature, when political relations between the Ottoman and Qing administrations were still quite limited.

Dihlevî (Seyyid Nusret Ali Khan Dehlevi) was born in India in 1852, but as a young man sought refuge in the Ottoman Empire because of his objections to British colonial rule. His work on China combines his own notes with other contemporary reports. The resultant travelogue contains descriptions of China’s physical geography, including its coasts and islands, mountains, lakes, and rivers; climate; mineral resources; agriculture; architecture; provinces; social customs; major cities and their important sites; traditional dress, etc. Also discussed are the traditions of pagan peoples and Muslims in China, as well as certain current events.

Although written in a style and tone which is not (for obvious reasons) distinctively Turkish, Dihlevî’s work is nonetheless highly significant as an account of China from an Ottoman-Muslim perspective during a period when diplomatic contact between these two powerful empires at the opposite ends of Asia was still at the embryonic stage, and it can therefore be regarded as an important source for this field of enquiry.

Özege, Eski Harflerle Basılmış Türkçe Eserler Kataloğu (Catalog of Turkish works printed in Old Letters), 3359

No copy located in OCLC.