• The Wolfgang A. Herz Library:  auction at Christies

    Sale 2158

    The Wolfgang A. Herz Library: Important Voyages and Travels

    9 December 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 299

    RALEIGH, Sir Walter (ca 1552-1618). The Discoverie of the Large, Rich and Bewtiful Empire of Guiana, with a relation of the great and Golden Citie of Manoa (which the Spanyards call El Dorado) And of the Provinces of Emeria, Arromaia, Amapaia, and other Countries, with their rivers, adjoyning. London: Robert Robinson, 1596.

    Price Realised  

    RALEIGH, Sir Walter (ca 1552-1618). The Discoverie of the Large, Rich and Bewtiful Empire of Guiana, with a relation of the great and Golden Citie of Manoa (which the Spanyards call El Dorado) And of the Provinces of Emeria, Arromaia, Amapaia, and other Countries, with their rivers, adjoyning. London: Robert Robinson, 1596.

    4o (175 x 125 mm). (Margins trimmed closely, just touching a few page numbers, title with light staining and minor fraying to fore-edge, occasionally some light marginal staining, a few short tears.) 19th-century brown morocco, paneled in blind, spine gilt-lettered. Provenance: Frank C. Deering (morocco bookplate).

    THE SEARCH FOR EL DORADO

    THE DEERING COPY OF THE FIRST EDITION, second issue, p.60, line 12 starting "on, it there." Raleigh gives an account of his second voyage which took him to modern Venezuela in search of El Dorado and includes many interesting geographical observations. Shakespeare is believed to have obtained his knowledge of the "still vexed Bermoothes" from this book. "Information had been gleaned from a Spanish letter captured by George Popham and the subsequent renaissance voyages from 1593 by Jacob Whiddon and John Burgh. The word 'Manoa' probably relates to the Manau Indians, after whom Manaos was to be named..." (Howgego).

    Raleigh sailed from England in June 1595 with 150 men in four ships bound for South America. On arrival at Orinoco, Raleigh heard fantastic stories from the natives of fabulous cities deep in the interior and of the existence of Amazons. He made numerous short excursions before returning to the coast and sailing to Assapano Island and Trinidad, thence along the north coast of South America. After rounding the coast of Cuba, Raleigh returned to England in September 1595. Alden & Landis 596/84; Arents Tobacco 49; Church 254; Hill 1414; Sabin 67552; STC 20635.


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