CLAUDE LE BEAU (1704-1779)
Avantures … ou Voyage curieux et nouveau, parmi les sauvages de l'Amerique septentrionale. Dans le quell on trouvera une description du Canada. Amsterdam: Herman Uytwerf, 1738. 2 volumes, 8º (156 x 95mm). Folding engraved map and 6 folding plates. (Vol. I with clean tear into cartouche of map and hole at fold, large worm track to quires X and Y affecting page numerals, some lighter worming of lower margins in second half, vol. II with occasional light browning.) Contemporary speckled calf (extremities worn).
FIRST EDITION of this voyage by the Swiss traveller Claude Le Beau, a rough character who, in 1729, left Paris for La Rochelle in a convoy of prisoners expected to remain in Canada for the rest of their lives. However, after working as a clerk in the Beaver Office, Quebec, he stole some gunpowder and set off for New England. There his activities as a counterfeiter brought him close to a hanging, and he fled to Holland in 1731. Even if only partly factual, his book describes the life and customs of the Iroquois, Hurons, Algonquins, and other tribes, and contributes importantly to the literary history of New France. A German edition appeared in 1752. Lande 513; Sabin 39582; Staton & Tremaine/TPL 168.
LAHONTAN, Louis Armand, Baron de (1666-1715). Voyages … dans l’Amerique Septentrionale … séconde edition. Amsterdam: François l’Honoré, 1728. 2 volumes, 12º (166 x 90mm). Titles in red and black, vol. I with engraved frontispiece, 14 plates and maps, 2 folding, vol. II with 9 plates only (of 11), 2 folding. (Some plates browned, the two folding plates in vol. I slightly crumpled and worn, G6 in vol. I with corner torn away.) Contemporary polished calf, spines gilt (joints splitting). Provenance: Rt. Hon. Lord Tollemache (sold Sotheby's, 4 June 1965, lot 151, as recorded in pencil note). One of the first comprehensive descriptions of the western part of the continent. Howes L-25; Sabin 38641.