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A Residence of Twenty-One Years in the Sandwich Islands ; or, The civil, religious and political history of those islands: comprising a particular view of the missionary operations connected with the introduction and progress of Christianity and civilization among the Hawaiian people
Hartford: Hezekiah Huntington, 1847. Octavo, with steel-engravings; original gilt and blind-stamped leather, small split to lower hinge, with the usual foxing, but a very good copy in the scarcer special binding. Cook responsible for his own fate. 'The most important book on the history of the American Protestant mission in Hawaii during the years 1820-1841, and one of the key books of Hawaiian history…' (Forbes). This is the first edition of one of the most informative books on Hawaii during the early missionary years. Bingham was instrumental in developing the idea that Cook's acceptance of the apparent worship of the Hawaiians in 1779 was largely responsible for his death, writing 'we can hardly avoid the conclusion, that for the direct encouragement of idolatry, and especially for his audacity in allowing himself like the proud and magisterial Herod to be idolized, he was left to infatuation and died by the visitation of God.' Bingham's name crops up everywhere in the history of the period: he arrived in Honolulu in 1820 and spent the following 21 years in missionary work. He quickly learned Hawaiian, and created a written version of the language which he used, with William Ellis, to begin printing in native Hawaiian; he helped his missionary colleagues to translate the Bible into Hawaiian. He received support from the royal family and the travels that he made through the islands with this official sanction enabled him to gather their impressions which appeared in this book written after he finally left for the United States in 1840. Sabin said that it was probably the best work on the Sandwich Islands There were additional Hartford editions in 1848 and 1849 and another one published at Canandaigua, New York, in 1855.
      [Bookseller: Hordern House Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2014-07-29           Check availability:      Biblio    


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