By: Diana Shipton, with

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THE ANTIQUE LAND by Diana Shipton, with decorations by Jill Davis
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Hodder & Stoughton, London - first edition, 1950. Hardcover, 9" x 6", with part-jacket mounted. This is probably an ex-library copy, although no stamps, stickers or pocket are evident; jacket front is mounted on rear cover, and 'blurb' from jacket is mounted oppsite half-title page. Original bookseller's label to fixed front. Book in GOOD condition. Aqua-green cloth-bound boards with (fading) gold type to spine, and gold drawing to front, map endpapers, photographic frontispiece ("Kungur, Seen on Way to Oitagh"), 22 other b&w photos, and epilogue. For six years Eric Shipton, of Everest fame, was British Consul General at Kashgar, in the heart of China's distant Sinkiang province (on the Old Silk Road close to USSR-Afghanistan-China borders). In this book, now becoming scare, his wife gives us, in a narrative of engaging freshness and spontaneity, her own impressions of an ancient, isolated and enchanting land. Central Asia, during the 1940s,was still a country of fantasy, where it is possible to come on facts, customs and scenery unrecorded in travel books; Mrs Shipton has a gift for noting these, and a rare interest in unfamiliar ways of life, as well as the power of describing experiences - arduous or merely comic - which she and her husband underwent during the six years. Book covers are soiled.

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