5 April 2016
CHARLEVOIX, Pierre-François-Xavier de (1682-1761). Histoire et description generale du japon; ou l'on trouvera tout ce qu'on a pu apprendre de la nature & des productions du pays, du caractere & des coutumes des habitans, du gouvernement & du commerce, des revolutions arrivees dans l'empire & dans la religion; et l'examen de tous les auteurs, qui ont ecrit sur le meme sujet. Paris: Julien-Michel Gandouin, 1736.
2 volumes, 4° (260 x 200 mm). Half-titles printed in red and black. Vol. 1: 11 engraved plates (6 double-page) and 7 maps and views (double-page or folding); vol. 2: 14 engraved plates (7 double-page) and one oversized folded map. (A few maps with minor separation or short tears at some folds, occasional minor spotting or light browning, otherwise fine.) Contemporary French mottled calf, spines gilt. Provenance: Mr. Bronod, avocat au counseil (armorial bookplate).
FIRST EDITION. This issue has only Gandouin only listed as publisher, another issue has four additional names listed in the imprint (see following lot), no priority not determined. This copy with the maps of Kamtschatka and Jedo bound in first volume, rather than second volume, as called for.
The Jesuit traveller and historian Charlevoix wrote this work although he had never been in Japan. It is mainly a compilation of the works of Engelbrecht Kaempfer (1651-1716). The map of Japan is by Bellin, vignettes and plates engraved by Mothey, and the city views and map of Korea engraved by d'Heuland.
The work was issued simultaneously in 9 volumes, 12mo.
Alt-Japan-Katalog 322; Chadenat 2250 (“Ouvrage tres recherche, orne de nombreuses cartes et planches. Legere mouillure”); Cioranescu XVIII, 16891; Cordier Japonica, 422-423; De Backer 7 Sommervogel II, 1077; Quérard II, p. 137.
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