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2020-07-23 06:37:03
THUNBERG, Karl Peter.
Travels in Europe, Africa, and Asia ...London, W. Richardson and J. Egerton (vols I-III) and F. and C. Rivington (vol. IV), [1793?]-1795. 4 volumes. 8vo. With 11 engraved plates (1 folding). Contemporary gold-tooled tree calf, green ribbon markers.
First English edition of Thunberg's famous voyage to South Africa, Indonesia, Japan and Ceylon in the years 1770 to 1779, containing "material of great ethnographical interest" (DSB). In 1770 Carl Peter Thunberg was offered the opportunity to travel to Japan on a Dutch merchant vessel to collect plants for the Amsterdam botanical garden. Japan was closed to all foreigners except the Dutch, so in order to pass for a Dutchman, Thunberg stayed three years in the Cape Province to learn the language, making three journeys to the interior of the country, collecting and describing more than 3000 species, including about 1000 new to science. In 1775 he travelled on to Java, and in August 1775, he arrived in Japan. Although his movements were restricted, he nevertheless managed to collect specimens via his interpreters.With armorial bookplates of William Scott Kerr, title-pages of vols. I-III with small watercolours in roundels, signed "I.P.A.". Vols. I-III lack half-titles, vol. II lacks the index as well. Some browning and spotting, otherwise in good condition. The bindings worn, the joints of vols. I-III cracked and the front boards nearly detached.l Cordier, Japonica, col. 446; Mendelsohn II, pp. 499-500; South African bibliography IV, p. 505; cf. DSB XIII, pp. 391-393.
Bookseller: ASHER Rare Books (Since 1830) [Netherlands]
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