Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - March - 2010 Issue

Travels and Explorations, Especially Cook, from Antiquariat Eigl

Eigl34

Travels and exploration from Antiquariat Ralf Eigl.


By Michael Stillman

Antiquariat Ralf Eigl has published their Katalog 34 with the title Reisen und Expeditionen Mit Sonderteil: James Cook. Two things evident about this catalogue from the title is that it is primarily in German, and that it is about travels and expeditions, with a section devoted to the English explorer James Cook. Circumstances, more specifically, this writer's unfamiliarity with the German language, will mostly limit our focus to those books that are in other languages and are so described. There are several books in English, along with a few in French and Spanish. Most books, however, are in German, so those who understand and collect in this language may want to contact the bookseller for a copy. Our look at the non-German titles should, at least, give an idea of what type of material is to be found inside.

Captain James Cook is recognized as likely the greatest 18th century explorer. He traveled from England to the Pacific three times from 1768-1779. While all of his voyages were important, it is probably the second that was the most important of all. It laid to rest a fundamental misconception concerning the southern part of the world. The widely held belief was that there was a massive southern continent, far bigger than the Antarctica we know today. Cook ventured far south, farther than anyone before him, until blocked by ice. Still, he found no continent, though he was well into the latitudes where one was presumed to exist. The second voyage also took Cook to the South Pacific, where he met and took back home the young native man Omai, who became the rage of London. Item 2 is Cook's official account of his second voyage, A voyage towards the South Pole, and around the World, published in 1777. Priced at €14,000 (euros, or approximately $19,030 US dollars).

The third voyage was Cook's longest trip, and ultimately it proved fatal for the great navigator. One of its major aims was to find a Northwest Passage from the Pacific side. Most explorers had tried to find this northern passage from the Atlantic side, without success. Cook discovered the Hawaiian Islands on his trip towards the Northwest, and after an unsuccessful attempt to find a passage, he returned. Though warmly received the first time, something went terribly wrong. Cook and his men became involved in a dispute with the natives and Cook was killed. Various accounts of his death were written, but many believe that surgeon David Samwell's was the most complete and accurate version of what happened. Samwell wrote a book about the journey, and a year later, in the New Annual Register for 1786, his specific account of Cook's death was published. This edition of the Register is item 12. €1,700 (US $2,310).

Samwell also wrote about native languages in this article, On the Language of the South Seas, published in Gentleman's Magazine in 1789. In these pre-evolution days, many people believed that these far flung peoples must be remnants of the Lost Tribes of Israel. To establish this theory, they would look for similarities in language with ancient Hebrew. Samwell knocks this theory down in his article, saying, "I am fully persuaded, that an accurate comparison of the South-Sea vocabulary with the Hebrew will shew that two languages, so totally dissimilar in sound, can never be traced to the same origin." €320 (US $435).

Item 18 is in German, but it is a book even English collectors will recognize. It is the account of Cook's third voyage by the German seaman Heinrich Zimmermann, Heinrich Zimmermanns von Wiszloch in der Pfalz, Reise um die Welt, mit Capitain Cook. Zimmermann was an ordinary sailor, living on the lower deck, but he kept a diary of his journey with Cook on the Discovery. He provides a different outlook from those of the officers who published. Zimmermann jumped the gun with his account, publishing several years before the official version, in violation of the British Admiralty's rules. That mattered not to Zimmermann, now outside their reach. The first edition, which was in German, was published in 1781. Offered is the second German edition, published in 1783, identical to the first, but, Antiquariat Eigl points out, even rarer than the first. €29,000 (US $39,420).

Antquariat Ralf Eigl may be reached at (0049) (0)8031 / 33504 or RalfEigl@t-online.de. Their website is found at www.AntiquariatEigl.de.

You will find many of Antiquariat Ralf Eigl's books listed in "Books For Sale" on this site.
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Rare Book Monthly

  • <center><b> The Library of Pierre Bergé<br>Auction Pierre Bergé & Associés<br>in association with Sotheby’s<br>Paris-Hôtel Drout<br>December 14, 2018<br><br>New York Exhibition<br>Oct. 16 to Oct. 20</b>
    <b>The Library of Pierre Bergé, NY exhibition 10/16 to 10/20:</b> BARTHOLOMEUS ANGLICUS. <i>Le Proprietaire des choses.</i> Lyon, [circa 1484]. 150 000 / 200 000 €
    <b>The Library of Pierre Bergé, NY exhibition 10/16 to 10/20:</b> MONTAIGNE, Michel de. <i>Essais.</i> Bordeaux, 1580. 400 000 / 500 000 €
    <b>The Library of Pierre Bergé, NY exhibition 10/16 to 10/20:</b> PROUST, Marcel. <i>Du côté de chez Swann.</i> Paris, 1914 [1913]. 600 000 / 800 000 €
    <b>The Library of Pierre Bergé, NY exhibition 10/16 to 10/20:</b> MONSTRELET, Enguerrand de. <i>Le Premier [-Tiers] Volume des Cronicques.</i> Paris, circa 1503.<br>300 000 / 400 000 €
  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
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    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
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    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Shackleton, Ernest. <i>South Polar Times.</i> 1st edition, limited issue. from the library of Michael Barne. $20,000 to $30,000
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    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>The Voice of the People.</i> Boston, 1754. Rare pamphlet on the Excise Tax. Nathaniel Sparhawk's copy. $4,000 to $6,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Autograph Letter Signed ("S.L. Clemens"), offering extensive hard-earned advice on writing, 5 pp, 1881. $30,000 to $50,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> After Fra Egnazio Danti. <i>L'Ultime Parti not:e nel Indie Occid:ntli" [The last known parts of the Western Indies].</i> Painted Map of California, Western Mexico, and Japan. $70,000 to $100,000
    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Ptolemaeus, Claudius. <i>Geographie opus nouissima...</i> 1513. The most important edition of Ptolemy, containing the Admiral's Map. $250,000 to $350,000
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> De Arellano, Don Alonso. Manuscript, his <i>"Relación mui singular y circunstanciada... Capitán del Patax San Lucas,"</i> manuscript copy from the Sir Thomas Phillips collection. $50,000 to $80,000
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    <b>Bonhams: Exploration and Travel, Featuring Americana, Part I. September 25, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> Lewis, Meriwether. Contemporary manuscript true copy of his final power of attorney, 1809. $8,000 to $12,000
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    <b>Bonhams, Sep. 25:</b> <i>Scientific Base Ball Pitching: A Treatise on the Pitcher, Pitching, Origin and Philosophy of the Curve.</i> Chicago, 1897. $2,000 to $3,000
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> Jean de Mandeville, <i>Reysen und Wanderschafften durch das Gelobte Land,</i> Strassburg, 1488. $15,000 to $25,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> Printed <i>Book of Hours</i> with 20 full-page illustrations, Paris, 1509. $6,000 to $9,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> Jean La Fontaine, <i>Fables Choisies, mises en Vers,</i> first editions, Paris, 1668. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> Giovanni Boccaccio, <i>De las mujeres illustres en romance,</i> Zaragoza, 1494. $20,000 to $30,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> José González Cabrera Bueno, <i>Navegación Especulativa, y Práctica,</i> Manila, 1734. $8,000 to $12,000.
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    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Oct 16:</b> Joseph Boneta y Laplana, <i>Gritos del Purgatorio, y Medios para acallarlos,</i> Manila, 1711. $4,000 to $6,000.

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