BIDA, Alexandre (1813-1895) & E. BARBOT (1798-1878)
Paris: Lemercier, [circa 1850]. Large folio. (22 1/8 x 16 3/8 inches). Lithographed and mounted on cloth guards throughout: tinted title with integral vignette by and after Alexandre Bida, 24 tinted plates titled in French, Arabic and English (comprising: 12 views after E. Barbot drawn on stone by Eug. Ciceri with occasional help from C. Bour; 12 costume/character studies by and after Alexandre Bida), all printed by Lemercier.
Contemporary brown half morocco over blue cord-grained cloth, upper cover titled in gilt "Souvenirs / d'Egypte", spine in seven compartments with semi-raised bands, lettered in the second, the others with simple repeat decoration in gilt, cream/orange glazed endpapers
A spectacular and rare album featuring the work of two important French Orientalist artists.
Only a single copy of this work is listed as having sold at auction in the past thirty-five years, and according to Chadenat this album was never sold commercially. The twenty four uniformly excellent plates include twelve topographical views after Barbot of Egyptian sights and cities from Philae to Cairo, ancient and modern, all peopled and bustling with life. Alexandre Bida's contribution consists of twelve beautifully-observed character studies of the people he encountered in the region: an Albanian, a Copt, dancers, ladies, a donkey driver, a groom, etc. Bida, studied under Eugene Delacroix, and travelled extensively through Egypt, Greece, Turkey, Lebanon and Palestine. "E. Barbot" is Prosper Barbot (1798-1878), a pupil of Jules Coignet and Louis Watelet, who made two journeys to Egypt in 1844 and 1846 travelling from Cairo south across the desert.
Colas I.326; Chadenat 761 ("Tres belle album non mis dans le commerce."); Lipperheide I, Ma32.