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"diplomatist, traveller, and mystic"

Oliphant, Laurence The Russian Shores of the Black Sea in the autumn of 1852. With a voyage down the Volga and a tour through the country of the Don Cossacks. Edindurgh and London William Blackwood and Sons 1853
First edition. 8vo (22 x 15 cm), pp.xii, [1], [1, blank], 366, tinted lithographic frontispiece, 2 maps, 1 folding, and 33 illustrations to text. A very good copy in contemporary diced plum calf, spine gilt with raised bands. Contemporary bookplate with G and coronet.

Laurence Oliphant (1829-1888), "diplomatist, traveller, and mystic", travelled through Russia, via St Petersburg and Moscow, to the Crimea in 1852. He entered Sevastopol, disguised, and surveyed its fortifications. Oliphant's route traversed the Caucasus, and the final leg of his journey took him from Odessa to the Danube. The Crimean War brought increased public interest in Russia, and this book went through four editions by 1854.