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Historia Aethiopia [361 pages]
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Historia Aethiopia

A new history of Ethiopia. Being a full and accurate description of the kingdom of Abessinia. Vulgarly, though erroneously, called the Empire of Prester John. In four books. Wherein are contained, I. An account of the nature, quality, and condition of the country; and inhabitants. II. Their political government; the genealogy and succession of their Kings; a description of their court. III. Their ecclesiastical affairs; their conversion to the Christian religion, and the propagation thereof, their sacred writings. IV. Their private oeconomy, their books and learning, their common names.

 

The original Latin rendition of the present work was first published in the year before this appearance. Curious about nearly everything, Ludolf here recounts observation and history both accurate and fabulous as to Ethiopia's climate and terrain, exotic wildlife and human folkways, and religious and political and trade history; he offers => lots of amazing stories. Illustrated with => nine copper-engraved plates, this English edition has its tables and illustrations an "Ethiopic Alphabet"; a folding botanical study of "the Indian Figg"; another folding plate of an "Eastern sheep" whose tail is so fat it needs to be drawn behind him in a cart; and renditions of elephants, apes (i.e., monkeys) eating ants, and hippos with entertainingly implausible teeth.

 

Book Details
Title: A new history of Ethiopia. Being a full and accurate description of the kingdom of Abessinia, vulgarly, though erroneously called the empire of Prester John by Ludolf, Hiob
Author: Ludolf, Hiob.
Publisher: London Printed for Samuel Smith bookseller at the Princes Arms in St. Paul's Church yard
Publication Date: 1682

 

The hardcover version of this book is sold for $1800-7200 on sites such as this one.

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