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A Collection of Voyages and Travels, Consisting of Authentic Writers in our own Tongue, which have not before been collected in English, or have only been abridged in other Collections. And continued with Others of Note, that have published Histories, Voyages, Travels, Journals or Discoveries in other Nations and Languages, relating to Any Part of the Continent of Asia, Africa, America, Europe, or the Islands thereof, from the earliest Account to the present Time. Digested According to the Parts of the World, to which they particularly relate... And with great Variety of Cuts, Prospects, Ruins, Maps, and Charts. Complied from the curious and valuable Library of the late Earl of Oxford... .
London: Thomas Osborne, 1745. Two volumes, folio, with 37 maps and 16 plates (many folding), and a letterpress folding table; a handsome set in the original panelled calf, decorated in gilt, sympathetically rebacked by Aquarius. One of the most handsome voyage compendiums of the eighteenth century, these two volumes are typically known as the 'Harleian' or 'Oxford' voyages', being compiled in some part from the unpublished manuscripts in the collection of the Earl of Oxford. Although separately published by Thomas Osborne at a later date, these volumes are generally considered the logical supplement to the travel anthology first published in 1704 by John and Awnsham Churchill. Comprising material not included in the first six volumes of Churchill's anthology (including Galvano, Drake, Le Maire, de Mont and numerous others), they form a natural compliment.The first volume principally comprises the Near and Middle East, while the second volume covers North America, India, East Asia and the East Indies and Africa. The Chinese content is substantial and includes Baudier's History of the Court of the King of China and Escalante's Account of the Empire of China. The well printed plates are derived from a range of sources, while the maps are principally after the work of Dutch cartographer Herman Moll. The frontispiece to the second volume is a magnificent folding map titled "A Chart of the East Indies", while Moll's famous map of the trade winds (originally printed for Knapton's voyages of Dampier) here re-appears as a considerably enlarged folding chart measuring 200 x 540 mm.Osborne, or a close associate, has contributed a disarmingly eloquent introductory discourse on travel, foreign government and the like, filled with choice aphorisms such as "in your travel you shall have great help to attain knowledge, which is not only the most excellent thing in man, but the very excellency of man".This set bears the armourial bookplates of Thomas Dampier, Bishop of Rochester and a veteran bibliophile and friend of Thomas Dibdin. Though no relative of the buccaneer of the same name, Thomas Dampier's library was reputed to be one of the finest in England at the time, and upon his decease was sold en-bloc to William Cavendish for the handsome sum of £10,000.A printer's error has resulted in jump in pagination between pp. 262-410 in the first volume. Although this is not noted in the bibliographies listed, comparison with two copies in American university libraries reveals the mis-pagination is consistent (accordingly, the set presently offered is complete). A little foxing of the preliminaries, fore-edge margin of the frontispiece to the first volume thumbed and a little chipped (now well laid down); yet an excellent set overall, later bookplates of Rodney Davidson.
      [Bookseller: Hordern House]
Last Found On: 2016-03-16           Check availability:      Direct From Bookseller    


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