Very Good. Item #9478
[Mixed co-publishers; vols. identical in format, from the same set of plates and same printer]. London: Edward Arnold, 1906 and New York: Longmans, Green & Co., 1907. Both First Editions. Each volume octavo (23x15x5cm). Vol I (Arnold) xii + 362pp + 16pp of publisher's prospectuses. Vol II (Longmans) xii + 387pp, including index. Note that this second volume, though "published" in New York per the title page, was actually printed in London by the same printer that produced Vol. I for Edward Arnold.
Vol I: 17 full-page B&W documentary photos; 7 full-page battle terrain sketches; 9 gatefold maps in 4 colors.
Vol II: 17 full-page B&W documentary photos; 10 full-page battle terrain sketches; 16 gatefold terrain sketches and maps in 4 colors.
Prussian blue cloth with gilt spine lettering and rules, and front panel stamping, with additional blind rules on panels. Vol. I is discarded from a military library, showing the removal of library markings on the spine and front pastedown, with additional normal fraying and edge erosion at crown and foot of spine and panel edges; previous owner's signature on front pastedown; one map with a slight misfold now corrected. Vol. II, from an army veteran's private library with bookplate (in this second volume only), shows very slight spine and panel edge scuffing. Some light foxing to textblock front edge, endpapers, and photographic plates. One full-page sketch, detached from tipped-in edge, is now laid in. The two volumes were married by the immediate previous owner.
Sir Ian Standish Monteith Hamilton (1853-1947) observed and advised the Japanese during the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05. He would, two decades later, after serving against Germany in World War I, express admiration for Hitler during the proto-Führer's rise to power, and then regret it, perhaps not forcefully enough, for the rest of his life.
The Russo-Japanese conflict was the first great war in which Asia (embodied in Japan) beat Europe (embodied in the Euro-centric portion of Nicholas II's Russia), changing the calculus for global influence then, and for two world wars to come. These volumes, from the present distance, now appear naïvely—or perhaps obtusely—prescient of the tumults in the century that ensued.