27 October 2010
JOSSELYN, John (fl.1638-1675). New-Englands Rarities discovered: in Birds, Beasts, Fishes, Serpents, and Plants of that Country. London: G. Widdowes, 1672.
8° (144 x 88mm). With the leaf of adverts. One woodcut folding plate, illustrations, and publisher's device. (Very small dampstain in the margin of a few leaves.) Contemporary sheep (rebacked preserving the original spine, corners rubbed); morocco-backed case. Provenance: an early reader (a few small manuscript corrections) -- Philip Robinson (sold Sotheby's, 23 June 1988, lot 187).
FIRST EDITION. The Robinson copy of this early natural history of New England, which includes American Indian herbal remedies, and an important list, perhaps the first published, of English plants that thrive in America. The 'Description of an Indian Squa', and accompanying poem in praise of non-white beauty, appear on pp.99-102. Josselyn, a gentleman traveller, physician and surgeon, first visited New England in 1638-1639, and returned for a longer stay in 1663-1671. Church 618; Howes J-255; Hunt 322; Sabin 36674; Wing J-1093.
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