These large volumes are FIRST EDITIONS in very good condition for age. Edited By Arthur Wilberforce Jose & Herbert James Carter and Published By Angus 7 Robertson of Sydney. There is rare spotting only and pages are clean and in very good order. Volume 2 is just a little loose on front cover only. Volume 1 covers A-L and has 768 pages with 27 plates. Volume 2 cover M-Z and is of 748 pages.
The Encyclopedia was initiated in 1912 as a historical and biographical record under the directorship of Charles H. Bertie, municipal librarian of Sydney, and a lot of material had been collected when the outbreak of World War I in 1914 temporarily halted its progress.
In 1917 work resumed and it was decided that the book should also include scientific subjects. Herbert J. Carter, the future President of the Linnean Society of New South Wales (1925-1926) recruited other Australian scientists to work on the encyclopedia. Their contributions were, in many instances, the first summaries of scientific knowledge published in a general reference work in Australia. In 1920 Captain Arthur Jose was released from the Australian Navy and became the general editor. He found that due to the time elapsed since the project started and due to the availability of new sources that it had become necessary to re-write much of the historical and biographical information.[ The expanded second edition was published in 1958 in 10 smaller volumes with several reprintings. The Groliner Society of Australia published the 6 volume third edition in 1977, followed by the 12 volume fourth edition in 1983. The 9 volumes of the fifth edition were published on behalf of the Australian Geographic Society 1988.
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