|Content Description||The volume contains, as the title suggests, the journal entries of George Macartney, 1st Earl Macartney (1737-1806), ambassador-extraordinary and plenipotentiary to Peking, during his embassy to China, 1792-94. The journal was published as 'Journal of the Embassy to China', in the Memoir (vol 2) of his secretary, Sir John Barrow (1764-1848).|
The journal is comprised of, almost, daily entries of varying length and detail beginning with the voyage to China in June 1792, and ending in January 1794 with Macartney's preparations for his return to England. The entries detail Macartney's travels, offices and duties, and impressions of the Chinese people and culture.
In addition to the journal, the volume features: A Register of the Thermometer and Barometer in China from the 23rd June 1793 to the 17th March 1794; a List of the different Embassies to China in the last century and the present; A letter from Father Amyot to Lord Macartney, dated Pekin (sic) 27th August 1793; A letter from Mr Titsingh one of the Supreme Council of Batavia to Lord Macartney, dated Batavia 4th November 1793; Several papers containing Lord Macartney's observations upon aspects of China; Queries and answers relative to silk; Dr Gillan's papers upon the state of Medicine, surgery, chemistry etc. in China; Dr Gillan's opinion of the case of the Colao Cho-chan-tong. The content also mentions a 'Port Folio of Charts, plans, drawings etc.', but this is either missing, or was never copied.
|Descriptive Features||E.J. Labarre, Dictionary and Encyclopaedia of Paper and Paper-making (London, 1952; 2nd ed.) p 368|
Watermark: Strasbourg lily, i.e. large fleur de lis within shield surmounted by coronet, the base of the shield ends in a trefoil, below the shield, the letters GR and the date 1794 (Type A, front and back flyleaves)
Countermark: Name TAYLOR, 19 x 94 mm (With Type A)
Paper in the body of the volume is wove 'vellum' paper, made anytime after 1755 (see Labarre).
Professionally copied (on ruled paper) in italic script
Vellum on boards; upper and lower covers have as their only decoration a set of double parallel lines drawn with black ink 13 mm away from the four borders; spine, in contrast, is richly decorated, divided into 7 panels, 6 of which are gold stamped with a sun tool in the centre and a small sun tool in the four corners of each panel, a bank of fillet lines, ornate narrow rolls and a delicate roll of printed branches serves as a means to emphasize the divisions between the panels; second panel is covered with red leather and the word 'CHINA' is gold stamped on it; pastedowns and flyleaves are covered with marble paper.