5 April 2016
NIEUHOFF, Jan (1618-1672). L'Ambassade de la compagnie orientale des provinces unies vers l'Empereur de la Chine, ou Grand Cam de Tartarie... mis en François... par Jean le Carpentier. Leiden: Jacob van Meurs, 1665.
2° (356 x 220 mm). Title printed in red and black with engraved vignette. Engraved portrait of Colbert, 35 engraved plates (32 double-page, 3 bound vertically and with different watermarks), numerous engraved illustrations (lacking engraved frontispiece, some plates with old repairs to tabs or margins, one patched on verso, some spotting). (Title repaired along gutter margin, G4 with two margins renewed, approximately 6 leaves with marginal tears or repairs, some occasional staining and spotting.) 19th-century tree sheep gilt (spine rubbed and faded, a little wear to extremities). Provenance: Rene Satrie (early signature on title).
FIRST EDITION IN FRENCH, published the same year as the First Edition, in Dutch. The work was translated by Jean Le Carpentier; he rewrote much of Nieuhof's text and provided most of the text for Part II, Description generale de l'Empire de la Chine. The work comprises an account of the embassy made by the Dutch East India Company to the Chinese court with many incidental remarks on the manners and customs of the Chinese. The fine plates and illustrations show costume, natural history and numerous town views in China, Tibet and Tartary. Brunet, IV, 77; Cordier Sinica III, 2345; Cox I, p. 325; Grässe IV, 675; Landwehr 540; Lust 534.
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