• 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 305

    STEDMAN, John Gabriel (1744-1797). Narrative of a Five Years' Expedition against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam, in Guiana, on the Wild Coast of South America; from the Year 1772, to 1777. London: J. Johnson and Thomas Payne, 1806.

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    STEDMAN, John Gabriel (1744-1797). Narrative of a Five Years' Expedition against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam, in Guiana, on the Wild Coast of South America; from the Year 1772, to 1777. London: J. Johnson and Thomas Payne, 1806.

    4o (284 x 221 mm). Engraved titles with hand-colored vignettes, 81 hand-colored engraved plates and maps (3 folding and one double-page) by WILLIAM BLAKE, Bartolozzi and others after Stedman. (Some light browning and off-setting from plates.) Later calf gilt (some rubbing to spine and edges).

    LARGE PAPER, HAND- COLORED COPY of the second edition. "In 1772 [Stedman] volunteered to accompany an expedition sent out by the States-General to subdue the revolted Negroes in Surinam, or Dutch Guiana. This service, in which he was employed for five years, gave him the opportunity of his life. His narrative of it is a model of what such a book should be. The field of his curiosity embraced not only all branches of natural history, but also economical and social conditions. His description of the cruelties practiced on the Negroes, and of the moral deterioration resulting to their masters, forms one of the most vivid indictments of slavery that have been penned. Not the least curious thing in the book is the story of his relations with Joanna, a beautiful mulatto, who nursed him when sick, and bore him a son" (DNB). Sixteen of the plates are engraved by William Blake. See Abbey Travel 719; Bentley Blake Books 499B; Sabin 91075.


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