THE DUKE OF ABRUZZI’S EXPEDITION TO THE ARCTIC SEA, 1899-1900, RICHLY ILLUSTRATED WITH PHOTOGRAPHIC PLATES BY VITTORIO SELLA
AMEDEO, Luigi, Duke of Savoy. La “Stella Polare” nel Mare Artico, 1899-1900. WITH: Osservazioni Scientifiche Esequite Durante la Spedizione Polare… Milan: Ulrico Hoepli, 1903. Two volumes. Quarto, original blue cloth; La “Stella Polare” housed in original cardboard slipcase. $450.
First edition of this epic account of the expedition led by Prince Luigi di Savoia, Duke of the Abruzzi, to a latitude never before reached by anyone, illustrated with hundreds of photographic illustrations by renowned photographer Vittorio Sella and numerous in-text illustrations; together with a first edition of the volume of scientific observations.
Luigi di Savoia’s expedition was the most successful of all those that attempted to reach the high latitudes by way of Franz Josef Land. Embarking in the summer of 1899 on the Stella Polare, the combined Italian/Norwegian expedition put into Teplitz Bay in Rudolf Land and wintered there. The explorers made a determined effort in the spring of 1900 to reach the North Pole by sledge over the polar ice. When frostbite disabled Luigi, Captain Umberto Cagni led a sledge party and on 25 April 1900 achieved a previously unreached latitude. The expedition team lost three members during the arduous journey. Vittorio Sella, one of the greatest wilderness photographers of all time, accompanied the Duke on his major expeditions, including this one. The volume of scientific observations includes astronomical, meterological, zoological and botanical reports, among other subjects, supported with diagrams, in-text photographs and tables. La “Stella Polare” with hundreds of in-text illustrations, 24 full-page photogravure plates, engraved portrait of the Prince, two folding panoramas and four color maps, three of which are housed in pocket at rear. Texts in Italian. See Fitzgerald 8. Bookplates. Contemporary newspaper clippings with maps in rear pocket of La “Stella Polare.”
Interiors with occasional light foxing (more prevalent in Osservazioni Scientifiche) and soiling. Cloth of La “Stella Polare” with mild rubbing to spine and extremities, moderate bubbling; cloth of Osservazioni Scientifiche with moderate rubbing to spine. Original slipcase split and worn. Very good condition.