BAUMGARTEN ZU BREITENBACH, Martin von. "The Travels ... through Egypt, Arabia, Palestine, and Syria. In Three Books ... To which is prefix'd, The Life of the Author", extracted from: John CHURCHILL (ed.) A Collection of Voyages and Travels, London: Awnsham and John Churchill, 1704, volume I, pp.-502. 2° (occasional light spotting or marking, unobtrusive light worming in the lower margin), modern roan-backed boards, gilt leather lettering-piece (extremities lightly rubbed); a few early manuscript annotations. Baumgarten: Blackmer 95 (note). Churchill: ESTC T97848; Sabin 13015.
?First edition in English. Following the deaths of his three children and first wife, Martin Baumgarten (1473-1535), resolved to visit Jerusalem in 1507, taking with him a priest named Vincent, and his servant Gregory. As Christoph Donauer (the editor of the work and author of the prefatory 'Life') records, Baumgarten "kept a Diary in the German Tongue of all Remarkables seen, observed, or heard by him each Day", and "Gregory also kept a Diary of the same things in Latin as well as he could, and as the Learning of the Age permitted. From these two Diaries I have composed the following History" (p.426). The places visited and described include Corfu, Crete (and the Labyrinth, an "intricate Prison built of huge Stones, full of Windings and Turnings, where those who would endevour to get out, go perpetually round without advancing, and after a great deal of Labour are as near their purpose as when they began", p.434), Alexandria, Cairo, the pyramids (which seemed "rather to be the work of the Gods, than Men", p.455), Jerusalem, Damascus, and Cyprus. Baumgarten's observations cover all aspects of the lives of those they travelled amongst, and include a biography of Mohammed and an account of the Koran and its teachings.