[BRITISH INDIA / MIDDLE EAST] Seyahat jurnali: Istanbul'dan Bagdat'a ve Hindistan'a sene 1300 ilâ 1304. Musavver. [i.e. The illustrated narrative of a journey from Constantinople to Bagdad and India]
DIREKTOR ALI BEY, (1844-1899), Rauf Bey Kütüphanesi Sahibi Mustafa Rauf / A. Artin Asaduryan Matbaasi, Istanbul, [AH 1314] = 1896.
Contemporary handsome petrol green quarter leather, five raised bands to spine with decorative gilt edges, marbled boards. Roy. 8vo. (24 x 17 cm). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters. 118 p., 14 unnumbered woodcut plates (one is full of two pages). Hegira: 1314 = Gregorian: 1896.
Extremely rare first and illustrated edition of the journey of civil servant Ali Bey, who went from Istanbul to Baghdad and to India through his duty in Düyûn-u Umûmiye [i.e. Ottoman Public Debt Administration] covering the years 1885-1888, vividly describing Baghdad, Musul; and India.
In 1884 Ali Bey started his journey as an ex-governor of Trabzon city and a new OPDA officer from Constantinople (Istanbul), and he arrived in Baghdad through Lesbos, Ayvalik, Smyrna (Izmir), Mersin, and Alexandretta (Iskenderun). On their way to Baghdad, they cross the Tigris River on rafts that local people call "Kelek". His descriptions of Baghdad city are very important and first-hand accounts of the region including the details of the walls of the city, hospitals, health organizations, industry, a transportation company on the river, a new settlement near the center of Kadhimiya with a tram line to through the city built.
Ali Bey landed on the Indian continent in Karachi (today's Pakistan). He made a detailed description of the big cities that were the British Colony and states that he was influenced by these cities as a Reform period Turkish intellectual. He also describes Islamic India, Parsi traditions, costumes and funerals, Portuguese culture in India, Victoria Garden Zoo, silk weaving factories founded by David Sossoon, who came from Baghdad, architecture, music, theater, etc.
List of ills.: General view from Ayvalik, the port of Smyrna (Izmir), the port of Mersin, two panoramas of Diyarbakir and Aleppo cities, the bridge of Musul, "Keleks" on the Tigris, a local woman of Aleppo, Famous water mill of Aleppo, Fortress of Aleppo, Eagles of Parsi people in Bombay, A Parsi family from Bombay, Arcadia ship in Bombay, Straight of Hormuz in Basra.
Ali Bey was a playwright originally. He learned French in private lessons and firstly he worked at the Babiâli (The Sublime Port) Translation Office as a clerk, then he became a member of the Health Council and the first secretary of the Directorate of Quarantine. He went to Eastern Anatolia, Iraq, and Japan as an inspector of public debts (1855-88). After his duty as the Governor of Trabzon (1890-93) he became the director of the Office of Public Debts (1890-93), which would last until the end of his life. It is for this reason that he was called Direktör Ali Bey. His first work was published in Diyojen (1869-72), the first humorous review, published by Teodor Kasap. Ali Bey, who was one of the regular writers of this review, wrote plays for the Gedik Pasa Theater, which was founded by the Armenian Güllü Agop and his friends, and wrote scripts adapted from French plays. He gave Turkish diction lessons to the Armenian actors and participated in theater activities. His plays were performed under the authorship 'A Person' to hide his official identity. He explained the meanings of words satirically in his dictionary Lehçetü'l Hakayik (Language of Realities) which he wrote in 1897 and was the first work of its field; the faults of the 19th-century Ottoman Empire were also criticized in this dictionary.
Özege 17900.; TBTK 3068.; OCLC 218189547 (One copy in Bayerische Staatsbibliothek), 602878049 (one copy in Universitatbibliothek), 879555766 (Four copies), 56944884.