Ultima Thule; Or, A Summer in Iceland. Richard F. Burton.
Ultima Thule; Or, A Summer in Iceland

Ultima Thule; Or, A Summer in Iceland

London: William P. Nimmo, 1875.

First Edition. Two volumes, 8vo, pp. xix, 380, with folding map and 3 plates; vi, 408, with folding map and 8 plates (one double-page); additional illustrations in the text of both volumes. Bound in three-quarter green leather with marbled boards, edges, and endpapers, gilt spines with five raised bands. A lovely, fine set, with the only flaw being some light rubbing to the corners. Penzer pp 91-92. Burton spent the summer of 1872 in Iceland and produced this richly detailed account, explaining in the Preface that he hoped to offer a more balanced appraisal than those earlier works that described Iceland's landscape in overblown "scenes of thrilling horror, of majestic grandeur, and of heavenly beauty" and also a more thorough one: "Critics tell us that African travellers have so much trouble to reach the Unexplored Regions, that they are apt to report all they see at wearying length, and to empty the contents of their journals upon the public. But every mile of new, or even comparatively new, ground deserves careful topographical notices: let the general reader "skip" such photos if he likes, but let them be written at least for the purpose of future comparison." The work includes information on Iceland's people, economy, history, geography, resources, and natural history.

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