Here is a man who was ahead of his time – perhaps the first serious tourist, as opposed to explorer. Thomas Coryat played a minor role in the British court, sort of a “court jester” for Henry, Prince of Wales, under James I (though he saw himself as a wit rather than a jester). In 1608, Coryat undertook a five-month tour of Europe. That does not sound unusual today, but back then, people traveled on business or for state, but there weren't simple tourists. Coryat was a trailblazer. Nonetheless, he was not appreciated by his contemporaries. They still saw him as a fool. Coryat wrote of his European tour in 1611 in this book: Coryats Crudities. Hastily Gobled Up in Five Months Travells in France, Savoy, Italy... Pforzheimer describes his book as “There probably has never been such combination of learning and unconscious buffoonery as is here set forth....His adventures probably appeared to his contemporaries as more ridiculous than exciting.” Still, he provided a wealth of information about the places he visited. And, Coryat was able to secure introductory comments from around 60 writers of the day, though many are more mocking than complimentary. Item 12. $25,000.
Next we turn to science fiction, and the noted writer Isaac Asimov. Item 2 is a 1950 first edition of his collection of nine stories presented under the title I, Robot. The book introduced his recurring theme of the three (later four) laws of robotics. These were designed to make sure that while robots would be very useful servants of man, they would never go beyond their set limitations and harm their masters. $9,500.