Kaye’s Life of Sir John Malcolm. A very good copy of the first volume only.


Kaye, John William: The Life and Correspondence of Major-General Sir John Malcolm, G.C.B., late Envoy to Persia, and Governor of Bombay; from unpublished Letters and Journals. Vol I [only, of two]. Smith, Elder, and Co. [London & Bombay as Smith, Taylor, and Co.] 1856. 1st edition 8vo.

Engraved frontispiece portrait, xii, 538pp. Contemporary red full leather gilt and blind stamped, all edges marbled to match the endpapers, binding sound but scuffed and rubbed with loss of colour in parts, the contents are perfect and look unread, with no previous ownership markings at all. An excellent copy for re-binding if one could find a volume two.  Sir John Kaye, K.C.S.I. had served in the Bengal Artillery before becoming a prolific author, best known for his History of the Sepoy War. His work on Malcolm is probably the scarcest and most important of his biographies, the others being of Metcalfe & Tucker. Sir John Malcolm, G.C.B. [1769 – 1833] had a spectacular career beginning in India in 1782,  at Seringpatam in 1792 & 1799, Persian interpreter to the Nizam’s troops, secretary to a c-in-in c Madras and the Governor Lord Harris, appointed Envoy to Persia by Lord Wellesley 1799-1801, private secretary to Lord Wellesley 1801-3, Resident at Gwalior 1804 & Mysore 1805, appointed to missions to Persia by Lord Minto. This volume takes his life up to 1809 and the Vellore Mutiny in Madras. The missing second volume covers his more political career in Central India and as Governor of Bombay.        aug9/3

We have not had a copy of this work since 2001 and the only copy [of both volumes] on abebooks at the moment is priced at over £3,000.

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