NOORT, Olivier van (1568-1611). Description du penible voyage de faict entour de l'univers ou globe terrestre. Amsterdam: Cornelis Claesz, 1602.
2° (343 x 248 mm). Engraved vignette of Rotterdam on title, 25 engraved views, maps and portraits in text (including maps of the Straits of Magellan on C3r and Peru/Brazil on D3r, the image of a Japanese ship on F2v pasted in). (Pale abrasion on image on D1v, some occasional pale browning.) 18th-century red morocco gilt, gilt-lettered on spine (some minor wear at extremities). Provenance: Frank S. Streeter (his sale Christie’s New York, 17 April 2007, lot 387).
FIRST EDITION IN FRENCH: "of the utmost rarity" (Sabin). The work was issued in Dutch, French, German and Latin editions all in 1602. Van Noort accomplished the third circumnavigation of the globe, after Magellan and Drake, and was the first Dutchman to do so. Half the crew mutinied, his ships were constantly harrassed, and most of those that didn't mutiny perished from disease. Despite his effort, van Noort contributed little to the known geography of the world. Still, van Noort was an inspiration to his country, and he established Holland as a power in global exploration.
"Van Noort was the commander of a fleet of four vessels which set out from Holland in July, 1598, and found a route to the Indies by way of the Straits of Magellan. Passing through the Straits, he voyaged along the coasts of Chile and Peru as far as 13o 40' north latitude, and then turned westward across the Pacific; returning to Rotterdam in August, 1601" (Church, describing the German edition). Noort's description was reprinted in De Bry, vol. 9 and Hulsius, vol. 11.
EXTREMELY RARE: according to American Book Prices Current, only two other copies of this French edition are recorded at auction (and none in any other language) in at least the last 30 years: a defective copy sold at Sotheby's London, 7 December 1976 and a copy in a modern morocco binding, sold Christie's New York, 14 June 2006. See Borba de Moraes, p.617. Alden & Landis 602/74; Hogwego N37; JCB (3) II:16; Sabin 55436; Scott 51.