Our Notes & References
Uncommon account of southern Caucasus, illustrated with large plates and missing in the usual bibliographies.
First edition; a pleasant example in the original printed wrappers.
Svanetia is a region of the Caucasus in nowadays Georgia, just next to Ossetia: it was called ‘savage’ by Phillipps-Wooley in his 1883 work (of smaller format) on account of the propensity of the locals to murder anybody they took a dislike to. This casual attitude to life accounts for it being one of the least known parts of the Caucasus, although of great interest to the great powers being on the direct road from Russia to the Indian frontier.
Almost 10 years before Phillipps-Wooley, Bernoville explored this area in the early 1870s, returned in 1873 and published his main work two years later. It covers many aspects of history, culture, topography and politics of not only Svanetia, but also Georgia and its relation to Russia.
Next to a large folding map of the area, printed in colour, the fine illustration is composed of many various woodengravings in text and seven unusual duo-tone lithographs of views and local people, printed in stronger paper.