Quedah; Or, Stray Leaves from a Journal in Malayan Waters – Sherard Osborn (1861)


Quedah; Or, Stray Leaves from a Journal in Malayan Waters – Sherard Osborn (1861)


Title: Quedah; Or, Stray Leaves from a Journal in Malayan Waters

Author: Captain Sherard Osborn

Publisher: Routledge, Warne, and Routledge, London, 1861. Third edition.

Condition: Hardcover, boards. Former library book with all library markings. Wear to cover, interior very clean and sound. With one foldout map that has a closed tear to a fold. Engraved frontispiece, no other plates. 360pp.

About the book:

An important addition to any Singapore-Malaya collection, written by a British naval officer who commanded a gunboat to attack Kedah. This is an account of his travels to the peninsula aboard the navy ship Hyacinth – the same ship which later fought in the Opium Wars in China. The book is fascinating not just for its descriptions of  Singapore and Malay, or for studying the tactics employed by the British navy in its conquest of the region, but also because it contains a valuable map of the region..

About the author (from Wikipedia):

Sherard Osborn (25 April 1822 – 6 May 1875), was a Royal Navy admiral and Arctic explorer.

Born in Madras, he was the son of an Indian army officer. Osborn entered the navy as a first-class volunteer in 1837, serving until 1844 in Hyacinth, Clio & Volage.

In 1838, he was entrusted with the command of a gunboat at the attack on Kedah in the Malay Peninsula, and was present at the reduction of Canton in 1841 and at the capture of Woosung in 1842. From 1844 until 1848, he was gunnery mate and lieutenant in HMS Collingwood, the flagship of Sir George Seymour in the Pacific.

As captain of Furious, he took a prominent part in the operations of the Second Opium War, and performed a piece of difficult and intricate navigation in taking his ship up the Yangtse to Hankow (1858). He returned to England in broken health in 1859, and at this time contributed a number of articles on naval and Chinese topics to Blackwood’s Magazine, and wrote The Career, Last Voyage and Fate of Sir John Franklin (1860).