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Naval Staff Intelligence | Handbook of Libya (1917)

Price £695.00 Sale


I.D. 1162


An extremely rare 1917 edition of the British Naval Staff Intelligence Handbook of Libya. Classified as secret, and with a very restricted circulation, this volume was for official use only and its use was covered by the Official Secrets Act. It is a very detailed and comprehensive survey of all that was known at the time about Libya, including the topography, peoples, customs, climate, religion, railways, transport, communications, natural resources, and travel routes. Illustrated with town plans and three fold-out route maps. With a bookplate of the 'Royal Tank Corps Officers Mess Library' underneath another bookplate of 'Southern Command Mess Library' on the front endpaper. This handbook would no doubt have been an invaluable reference work for officers serving in this region during the First World War, and again during the North African Campaign of the Second World War.

Naval Staff Intelligence Division: The Naval Intelligence Division (NID) was created as part of the Admiralty War Staff in 1912, and was the intelligence arm of the British Admiralty before the establishment of a unified Defence Intelligence Staff in 1964. It dealt with matters concerning British naval plans, and with the collection of naval intelligence. It was also known as "Room 39", after its room number at the Admiralty. The department produced a series of handbooks during WW1 to aid the allied war effort and provide intelligence for officers in all branches of the armed services.


In very good condition. The cover is in good condition, with signs of wear at the edges of the flap, and a few marks. There is a small label attached to the spine. The interior folds of the front flap have been carefully reinforced with archival linen tape. The binding and hinges are very good and secure. The text is in very good condition, with a few marks and Tank Corps bookplates to the front endpapers. The three folding maps of routes in Libya, Tripoli, and Cyrenaica at the rear are in very good condition.

Published: 1917
Blue boards with gilt titling
Illustrated with maps
Dimensions: 125mm x 185mm
Pages: 628