1703 Voyage To Australia By William Dampier 1st Edition Of 1st Australia Voyage For Sale

Exceptionally rare and important, 1703, 1st Edition of William Dampier's Voyage to Australia - the first deliberate English Voyage to the Continent and one of the few published works on Australia before the Voyages of Captain Cook. This work is among the rarest and most highly sought after pre-Cook Australian Volumes and we are proud to be able to offer it here, as always, without reserve.


The Volume is fully titled “A Voyage to New Holland, &c., in the Year 1699: wherein are described the Canary-Islands, the Isles of Mayo and St. Jago, the Bay of All Saints, with the forts and town of Bahia in Brasil, Cape Salvadore, the winds on the Brasilian coast, Abrohlo-Shoals, a table of all the variations observ'd in this voyage, occurrences near the Cape of Good Hope, the course to New Holland, Shark's Bay, the isles and coast, &c. of New Holland : their inhabitants, manners, customs, trade, & c., their harbours, soil, beasts, birds, fish, &c., trees, plants, fruits, &c. : illustrated with several maps and draughts, also divers birds, fishes, and plants, not found in this part of the world, curiously engraven on copper-plates". By Captain William Dampier. London, 1703. 1st Edition. Published by James Knapton.


This account represented a third volume of adventures, and although the title page refers to the work as "Volume III", it was in fact published quite separately and is complete in and of itself.


This exceptionally rare, turn of the 18th century, Australian Voyage Volume measures 5" by 7 1/2" and contains 162 pages plus a 9 page index and 5 pages of publisher's adverts at the rear. The Volume was published with a folding frontispiece map, 4 maps / coastal views and 10 natural history plates. The example offered includes the 4 costal view / map plates but the folding frontis map and the 10 natural history plates are lacking (early facsimiles of the folding map and all 10 plates have been inserted by a previous owner).


This is the First edition of Dampier's second voyage to Australia (Dampier was the first Englishman to visit Australia when he stopped on the west coast in 1688, but he remained only a short time). The first description of a kangaroo can be found on page 123 and reads: "The Land-Animals that we saw here were only a sort of Racoons, different from those of the West-Indies, chiefly as to their legs; for these have very short fore Legs; but go Jumping upon them as the others do, and like them are very good meat.".


In this Volume Dampier furnishes accurate information and surveys, and he wrote (concerning Australia): "It is not yet determined whether it is an island or a main continent; but I am certain that it joins neither to Asia, Africa, nor America." His description of the Aborigines of Australia is believed by some to have inspired Jonathan Swift to write about Gulliver among the Yahoos' (Hill).


Widely regarded as the greatest English explorer and navigator before Cook, Dampier was also a popular and exciting writer. His books went through many editions - indeed he is still in print in one form or another - but copies of the first edition of this voyage to New Holland are now uncommon. As James A. Williamson wrote in his introduction to the 1939 Argonaut Press edition of the Voyage to New Holland, 'Dampier's permanent service to his countrymen was to arouse their interest in the exploration of the Pacific... His third and last book, the Voyage to New Holland, concentrated attention more particularly on the western and southern Pacific. It might have been more aptly described as a voyage to New Britain and a project for Eastern Australia, for there essentially lay the focus of his interest...'.


This exceptionally rare and important 1703 Dampier's Voyage to Australia is bound in its original, period polished full leather covers which are worn and damaged. Both the front and rear boards are present but the Volume lacks its spine cover entirely and both boards are detached. The boards are edge worn and paper strips have been affixed (a very long time ago) to the spine ends of both boards as part of a now lost, replacement paper spine. The interior block is tight and all text pages are present and untrimmed but without significant edge wear and without loss or damage to the text pages. There is some scattered foxing and age toning to the leaves with a small stain at the lower outside corner of a number of the pages (affecting the margin area only).The Volume retains its original front blank leaf but lacks the rear blank leaf. There are a number of inscriptions by previous owners on the affixed end papers and the blank front leaf (no manuscript writing on any of the text pages).


As stated above, the Volume retains the 4 pages of costal elevations / maps but lacks the folding frontis map and the 10 natural history plates which are reproduced and inserted as early facsimiles (see the scans below). We are not sure of the process used to create the facsimiles but they have significant age. This important Volume is certainly worthy of a high quality rebinding and we would be happy to suggest a wonderful, old world hand bindery here on Cape Cod that would certainly do a wonderful job.


A exceptionally rare and important, 1703 1st Edition of William Dampier's 1699 Voyage to Australia and worthy of a place at the center of even the most advanced library or collection!!!!

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1703 Voyage To Australia By William Dampier 1st Edition Of 1st Australia Voyage

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1703 Voyage To Australia By William Dampier 1st Edition Of 1st Australia Voyage:
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