The Head-Hunters of Borneo:
A Narrative of Travel up the Mahakkam and down the Barito; also, Journeyings in Sumatra. London 1882
Second Edition pp.xvi, 344, 30 lithograph plates, 28 in colour, folding map. A good copy in the original decorated cloth binding, a little rubbed, inner hinges starting.
Carl Bock was a Norwegian naturalist and explorer. Following a successful collecting expedition to Sumatra he was commissioned by the Dutch Governor-General to organize an expedition to the interior of south-eastern Borneo, to report on the country and its inhabitants, and to collect natural history specimens. Bock spent six months in Borneo, travelling up the Mahakam river and down the Barito. Although his purpose was scientific research he allowed his book to be influenced by the popular prejudices of his day, with dramatic tales of bloodthirsty Dayaks, and cannibalism. Despite this it contains a wealth of information on the Sultan of Kotei and on Dayak life and customs. The twenty-eight fine colour plates are perhaps the best produced of Dayaks, their tattoo and ornament, their houses and artefacts.