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Title: A few lyrics of Owen Meredith set to Hindu music by Sourindro Mohun Tagore ...Calcutta (Kolkata), Punchanan Mukerjee, printed by I.C. Bose & Co., 1877. Royal 8vo (23 x 15.5 cm). With the author's SMT monogram on the title page; the author's dedication to Lord Lytton, Viceroy and Governor-General of India, printed in gold ink with an elaborate decorative border printed in blue. Presentation binding apparently made in Calcutta: gold-tooled green goatskin morocco, the front board with Vishnu in a sunburst. With a presentation inscription to the Khedive of Egypt (Isma'il Pasha), dated 5 May 1878.
Description: , . . Public opinion and official communications, about the Bengal Music School ... (Calcutta 1876, with additions to at least 1879), item XX (the book itself, not noting the dedication leaf), supplement, item III (the 1 December 1876 announcement) and passim. First edition of a collection of songs published to celebrate Queen Victoria's assumption of the title Empress of India on 1 January 1877. The music was written in traditional Hindu style by Sourindro Mohun Tagore, but taking the lyrics from poems written under the pen-name Owen Meredith by Robert Bulwer-Lytton (1831-1891), Viceroy of India from 1876 to 1880. The music is written using Western notation, but each song is preceded by a note of the raga or ragini. The modes are often associated with the subjects of the poems, which include night, a storm, the seasons, plants and animals. Tagore (1840-1914) came from one of the leading artistic families in Calcutta. Well versed in traditional Indian music from his youth, he became a patron of Bengali and Hindu music but also studied Western music and became an internationally known musicologist. He was founder and president of the Bengal School of Music and a member of several European learned societies.The lengthy presentation inscription reads, "To His Highness the Khedive of Egypt ... Calcutta, 5 May 1878". Isma'il Pasha (1830-1895) became Khedive (Viceroy) of Egypt and Sudan under British rule in 1863 and was recognized by the Ottoman Sultan in 1867. He encouraged closer relations with European nations, but was deposed by the Sultan in 1879 under pressure from England and France and was succeeded by his son.The free end-leaf with the manuscript presentation inscription has been covered with blank paper, but the inscription can still be deciphered with a bright light behind it. With some minor smudges on the title-page but otherwise in very good condition. The binding shows minor surface defects, mostly in the untooled surfaces, but is still in good condition. A fascinating mix of Indian and European traditions, produced in Calcutta.

Keywords: Islamic Art & Culture, *ART & ARCHITECTURE, *ASIA, *BOOK HISTORY & PRINTING, *MIDDLE EAST & ISLAMIC WORLD, Bindings, Book History, Printing & Typography, India & Ceylon, North Africa & Egypt, Music, Theatre & Dance

Price: EUR 5000.00 = appr. US$ 5434.23 Seller: A. Asher & Co. B.V.
- Book number: H3ACP6PROV5H

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