RIHANI, Ameen Around the Coasts of Arabia. London, Constable, 1930.
8vo. Original black cloth spine lettered in red; pp. x, , 364, illustrated with plates after photographs; hinges a little worn, cloth a bit marked, but otherwise a good solid copy with a clean interior; two ownership inscriptions to front fly-leaf.
Scarce first Edition, the British issue, using the original American sheets. A late travel work by the distinguished Maronite Lebanese Arab-American writer Ameen Rihani, whose writings spanned large areas in both English and Arabic. According to Lebanese historian Samir Kassir he was 'the first Arab to publish in English without at the same time renouncing his own language.' Though less well known in the western world, he was a highly influential political activist, literary figure and intellectual celebrity across the entirety of the Arab world, with various state leaders attending his funeral in 1940. He was passionately involved in the cause of Arab nationalism, and delivered a great many lectures on the subject of social justice and foreign policy. Long passages of the volume are devoted to Kuwait and Bahrain. Rihani had travelled the entire peninsula and met with all leaders of the merging states, including Ibn Saud.