"ONE OF THE MOST ILLUSTRIOUS OF ENGLISH NAVIGATORS" (PMM): FOLIO HISTORY OF COOK'S AND OTHER MAJOR ENGLISH VOYAGES, 1784-86, WITH 156 COPPERPLATE ILLUSTRATIONS AND MAPS
ANDERSON, George William. New, Authentic, and Complete Collection of Voyages Round the World… Containing an Authentic, Entertaining, Full, and Complete History of Captain Cook's First, Second, Third and Last Voyages. London: Alex. Hogg, 1784[-86]. Thick folio (10-1/2 by 15-1/2 inches), contemporary full brown calf sympathetically rebacked in calf-gilt, red morocco spine label, raised bands.
Richly illustrated first edition account of the "first really scientific navigator," with engraved frontispiece portrait of Cook, 124 magnificent full-page plates of elevations, views, inhabitants, utensils, flora and fauna, and 31 maps and charts—including a large folding map of the world.
Facing challenges surpassed only by modern space flight, Captain James Cook embodied the spirit of the great age of maritime discovery. The only 18th-century explorer to lead more than one Pacific voyage, he embarked on three circumnavigations between 1768 and 1776, essentially transforming into their modern form the dangerously unreliable maps of the Pacific's expanse and the New World's western coast. "In three great voyages Cook did more to clarify the geographical knowledge of the Southern Hemisphere than all his predecessors had done together. He was the first really scientific navigator and his voyages made great contributions to many fields of knowledge" (Hill). Accounts of these three famous voyages, with their remarkable engravings, found an eager public, and today form the basis for any collection of exploration. In addition to Cook's voyages, this "important compilation of English voyages" includes accounts of the voyages of Sir Francis Drake, Lord Anson, Philip Carteret, Samuel Wallis, John Byron and Lord Mulgrave. "Anderson sometimes gives the original accounts, others are edited or abridged versions, and frequently additional materials, from other sources, are added to give scope and depth to the narratives" (Hill). Originally issued in 80 separate parts, with no date on the title page. This copy has the heading on page : "A Genuine…" (rather than "A New, Genuine…"). With undated four-page list of subscribers bound after "Directions to the Bookbinder" leaf at rear. Beddie 19. Hill 18. Cox I, 22. Howgego I: C176. Sabin 52455.
Title page and frontispiece reinforced on verso, occasional expert paper repair, only occasional scattered foxing; expert restoration to extremities. A most attractive copy.