A Guide to the Snakes of Uganda

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A Guide to the Snakes of Uganda

By Pitman, Captain Charles R. S.

SKU# 18712

$ 1,250.00

Pp. xxi, 362, 23 fine color plates, mostly by Oliver F. Tassart and Dorothy Fitchew, 18 full page text-figures, 2 diagrams, 2 folding maps.  Publisher's original one-quarter tan cloth with paper title label on spine, over blue-gray boards with paper title in the upper third, lg 8vo.  This is the rare first edition in book form.  The first appearance of the work was in the Uganda Journal (1935-1938).  Five hundred extra copies of each issue of the journal were set aside as published and later reassembled into a book with added preliminaries and indexes.  Late in 1938 it was published in book form in Uganda.  Sales slowed with the outbreak of World War II in 1939, so it was decided to ship the remaining 238 copies to London to increase sales.  These copies were placed in a warehouse where they were subsequently destroyed in German bombing raid.  These factors have contributed to the great scarcity of the work (Adler, History of Herpetology, p. 105).  This copy is signed by Charles Pitman on the front attached endpaper.  On the front free endpaper there is the following inscription: “Presented by the Uganda Educational Association to J. Sykes, Esq., Kampala, 18th January 1946.”  John Sykes was then editor of the Uganda Journal, the official journal of the Uganda Society.  John Sykes is likely a descendant of the zoologist Sykes who described several species of African mammals in the 1830s.  Pitman did not sign many copies of this book which makes this copy unusual and rare.  In addition, it if from the library of John Sykes who was the editor of the Uganda Journal where Pitman’s work was first published.  On the rear free endpaper, there is an additional printed spine label included.  Given this second printed spine label, the publisher must have assumed that the current attached title label would deteriorate.

Publisher Uganda Society
Publisher Place Kampala
Date Published 1938
Date Published Estimated No
Edition First edition
Number of Volumes 1
Reprint No
Condition Near fine
Condition Description Paper label on the spine is a little tanned, no signs of use, a bright and clean copy in near fine condition.
Limited Edition