[THE MIRROR OF ARABIAN PENINSULA, YEMEN, MECCA AND MEDINA] Mir'ât al-Haramayn: Mir'at al-Mecca, Mir'at al-Medina; Mir'at al-Jazirat al-'Arab. 5 volumes set.
EYÜP SABRI PASA [AYYUB SABRI PASHA], (?-1890)., Matbaa-i Bahriye [i.e. Naval Press], Istanbul, [AH 1301-1306 = AD 1885-1890].
A corpus and magnum opus of Ayyub Sabri Pasha including his travel account of the Arabian Peninsula consisting of three parts in five volumes (Mir'at al-Mecca in two volumes, 1175 pp., Mir'at al-Medina in two volumes, 1343 pp., Mir'at Jazirat al-'Arab in one volume, 416 pp.). Each red and red-green half morocco, raised bands to the spines with rich decorative gilt in compartments and boards. Medina part (in two volumes) in red and red-green moroccos with 'Mir'at al-Haramayn' lettered gilt on the spines. Mecca part (two volumes) in fine brown half morocco with traditional flowers embossing and gilded on boards, Jazirat al-Arab is in black half morocco with marbled boards. Endpapers and bindings aren't homogeneous. 4to. (27 x 18 cm), and roy. 8vo. (24 x 17 cm). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters). 29 attractive color and b/w plates (Two are missing), four panoramic views, plates, and plans, and one folded map. 5 volumes set. Occasional and slight marginal tears, slight foxing, and minor browning of text. Overall, a very good set.
First edition of this extremely rare corpus consisting of eight volumes including a first-hand travel account of the Arabian Peninsula written by Ayyub Sabri Pasha who served as the second head of the Islahât-i Bahriyye [i.e. Improvements of the Naval Forces Commission] under the directory of Muhâsebât-i Bahriyye [i.e. Accounting of the Naval Forces] and was a civil servant in the Hejaz for a long time, was also interested in the history of the region and Wahhabism. This information he collected as a result of his research with long and detailed observations in the Hejaz and other regions in the Arabian Peninsula formed the basis of his richly illustrated corpus, printed between the years 1885 and 1890. The corpus contains three chapters "Mecca", "Medina", and "Arabian Peninsula" in five volumes.
Based on early Arabic and other sources and his own observations, Ayyub Sabri Pasha completed his work fifteen years later after he began keeping notes of his travels in Arab lands in 1872. This corpus also includes his anti-Wahhabi views as well as a valuable historical account of Wahhabism.
This is one of the most comprehensive travel and historical account of Arabia and Wahhabism.
Ayyub Sabri Pasha was an Ottoman naval officer. A graduate of the naval college, he held various appointments and served for a while in both the Ḥedj̲âz and Yemen. He died in Istanbul in 1308/1890. He was the author of a number of historical and descriptive works on Arabia, including the present account of Mecca and Medina (Mir'ât al-Ḥaramayn, Istanbul 1301-6), and a history of the Wahhâbîs (Ta'rîkh-i Wahhâbiyyân, Istanbul 1296) which includes details about the beginning and spread of Wahhabism in the Arabian Peninsula. Besides these, he wrote a biography of the Prophet titled "Mohammad al-Siyar" (Edirne 1287). (Source: Bernard Lewis: Encyclopaedia of Islam).