KEANE, John Fryer [Hajj Mohammed AMIN]. Six Months in the Hejaz: An Account of the Mohammedan Pilgrimages to Meccah and Medinah. Accomplished by an Englishman Professing Mohammedanism. London, [Charles Dickens and Evans, Crystal Palace Press] for Ward and Downey, 1887.
8vo. Original dark green cloth, lettered and illustrated in gilt; pp. xi, 397; a fine copy.
John Fryer Keane (his name is given as T.F. Keane on the title-page) visited Mekka and Medinah disguised as a Muslim with an Indian Ameer in 1877-8. He gives a detailed description of the influx of pilgrims and the religious ceremonies. Perhaps most remarkably, Keane discovered an Englishwoman resident in Mekka, with whom he met secretly several times. He gave information concerning the woman to the Foreign Office on his return, resulting in secret agents making enquiries in Jeddah on her behalf. She was later traced in India and Keane tells her full story. Keane is obviously writing in the wake of Burckhardt, Burton and others, but offers his account to those "who may not have had the leisure, or perhaps inclination, to read" them. Keane might have been a convert to Islam, but that is still debated.