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The first Westerner to cross the Rub' al Khali, with a preface by Lawrence of Arabia

THOMAS, Bertram.
Arabia felix: across the empty quarter of Arabia.
London, Jonathan Cape, 1932. Large 8vo. With 61 plates, illustrations in the text and a large folding map of the "empty quarter" at the back. Original publishers orange buckram. XXIX, [3], 396, [2] pp.
€ 500
First edition, published simultaneously with the New York one. The preface was contributed by T. E. Lawrence. Among the many photographic illustrations is one of the earliest portraits of the Qatar royal family (facing p. 298). "In this book, Bertram Thomas relates some aspects of his journey in which he crossed the Rub' al Khali (Empty Quarter) from Oman to Qatar, and provides geographical information about the peninsula of Qatar, especially the southern part. He also recorded his observations of the region stretching from the Gulf of Salwa to Al-Rayyan, where he met Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim al Thani, Emir of Qatar at the time (1930). The book includes photographs he took of Sheikh Abdullah, Mohamed bin Abdul-Latif bin Mani', and his brother Saleh bin Abdul-Latif bin Mani'. He gives some concise information about Al-Nuaija, Doha towers, and the castle" (Fikri).
With a bookplate on the front paste-down: "The rule of right [in a banner], Arthur Garrard.", boards slightly rubbed, very slight browning throughout. Overall in very good condition. M.H. Fikri, Qatar in the heart and in history (2011), p. 46f. (illustrated); Macro 2185.
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Middle east & islamic world  >  Arabian Peninsula & Gulf States