ROUND KANGCHENJUNGA

A NARRATIVE OF MOUNTAIN TRAVEL AND EXPLORATION

by Douglas Freshfield

1903 First Edition

ONE OF THE FINEST HIMALAYA EXPLORATION BOOKS


This is the first printing of the first UK edition of ROUND KANGCHENJUNGA -- A NARRATIVE OF MOUNTAIN TRAVEL AND EXPLORATION by Douglas Freshfield. This book was published in London by Edward Arnold & Co in 1903. A hefty volume, it measures 260mm tall x 160mm, and has 373 pages, 42 b/w plates, a folding b/w panorama, 3 maps, 6 appendices, index. The classic account of the first high level circuit (1899) of Kangchenjunga located on the boundary between Sikkim and Nepal, the third highest mountain in the world at 8598 meters. Includes visits to its glaciers, reconnaissance of the mountaineering difficulties and potential routes, primary detailed mapping -- the first really close inspection of this gigantic mountain. Vittorio Sella was the photographer on this expedition. Sella's photos which illustrate this book are excellent, the photos of Siniolchum being some of the most famous of all mountain photographs. The text also includes Freshfield’s article on the native names for Mt Everest, plus the Pundits’ accounts of earlier explorations in the Kangchenjunga area (46pp): Sarat Chandra Das’ in 1879 & in 1881, and Rinsing’s crossing of the the Jonsong La in 1884.

Round Kangchenjunga is a very uncommon important mountaineering book. Hervey Fisher points out in his biography of Freshfield, From A Tramp's Wallet (Erskine Press, 2001): "Round Kangchenjunga was his best book. His descriptive powers were at their height...and an element of humanity creeps into the pages...It was to be published by Arnold and only a few copies had been distributed when a fire destroyed their warehouse and it was not thought possible to reprint. However there are enough copies in libraries for the work not to have been completely lost and the story is there for those who seek it out for themselves." Hence, most examples of the original first edition that currently appear for sale are rebound in new covers or are ex-library books with the usual institutional library markings.

CONDITION: Original dark red cloth, gilt decoration front, gilt lettering spine. The book is in nice condition with no previous owner marks or writing on any pages, tight binding, complete with all plates and maps, slight fading to spine cloth, foxing mainly restricted to margins but heavier towards the front and end of the book and opposite folded maps, clean covers, bright gilt on cover & spine, rubbing tips of to spine corners, nice example of a book that is often found in worn and soiled condition. Price: SOLD.


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