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Discoveries of the French in 1768 & 1769 South-East of New Guinea
London,: John Stockdale,, 1791.. Quarto, with 12 folding charts; an excellent copy in a good modern binding of half maroon calf. First English edition of the great work on the French discovery of the Solomon Islands, and a direct result of the voyage of the First Fleet to New South Wales: the French original was issued in 1790.Phillip's Voyage, first published in 1789, had included the journal of Lt. Shortland on his return voyage in the Alexander transport from Botany Bay to England, during which he coasted along a group of large islands which he named "New Georgia". Fleurieu, writing in a period of intense international rivalry over Pacific discoveries, denies that discovery and promotes those of Louis de Bougainville and Jean de Surville. He draws on unpublished manuscripts as well as the printed narratives of Cook, Bougainville, Phillip, Mendana, Quiros and others.There are also interesting comments on the La PÈrouse voyage. Fleurieu announces the receipt of journals from as far as Botany Bay, and in discussing the Great Ocean Chart (a fragment of which is published here), says publication is to be delayed until his later discoveries can be inserted. The translator of this edition notes that La PÈrouse has still not turned up and "the apprehension for his loss increases daily".The work is known for its series of attractive maps used by Fleurieu to illustrate his theories - most of which were ultimately proved correct - and which were based on actual discoveries rather than the conjectures of the past. As the Hill catalogue notes, 'When d'Entrecasteaux returned from his fruitless search for La PÈrouse, he confirmed that Fleurieu's theories appeared to be generally correct.'.Beddie, 1302-3; Hill, 611; Kroepelien, 437.
      [Bookseller: Hordern House Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2013-07-26           Check availability:      Biblio    

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