Exeter: Printed by S. Farley, for Philip Bishop and Edward Score, 1704.
1st Edition. Hardcover. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Very Good. Item #2733
8vo (184 x 110 mm). , 183 [i.e. 184] pp. Signatures: A-M8 N4. Title within double-line border, pages 182-184 misnumbered 181-183, a few mispaginations elsewhere. Bound in contemporary calf, spine with raised bands and recent gilt lettering piece in 1st compartment (extremities slightly rubbed, light chipping at head of spine, corners bumped), red-dyed edges. Text generally quite clean and crisp, rust-spot to blank margin of leaf I8, paper flaw to lower corner of leaf E1. Provenance: C. Harward (signature to free-endpaper dated 59); Bath Library (unobtrusive blindstamp to title and a few leaves elsewhere). A fine, wide-margined copy in original binding. ----
RARE FIRST EDITION of the first authentic record by an Englishman of the pilgrimage to Mecca. Pitts was forced into captivity as a slave at Algiers in 1679 when the merchantman in which he was sailing was captured by an Algerian pirate ship. In 1680, after torture led him to make a declaration of his conversion to Islam, he accompanied his master on the pilgrimage to Mecca via Cairo - of which he gives a very graphic account - Suez and Jeddah. After fifteen years captivity he succeeded in escaping but on his first night back in England was impressed for the navy, from which with difficulty he obtained his release. Pitts gives a brief but sensible and consistent account of what he saw during his pilgrimage. His narrative was the first and most detailed description of the religion of Islam and the manners of Muslims written by a European during the seventeenth century. - Visit our website for additional images and information.
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