7 - 8 April 2004
BLIGH, William (1754-1817). A Narrative of the Mutiny, on board His Majesty's Ship Bounty; and the subsequent voyage of part of the crew, in the ship's boat, from Tofoa, one of the Friendly Islands, to Timor, a Dutch Settlement in the East Indies. London: Printed for George Nicol, 1790.
4° (297 x 240mm). Folding engraved frontispiece plan, folding route map on blue paper, 2 charts, one folding. Early 19th-century half calf gilt (upper hinge weak). Provenance: John Denis, First Marquess of Sligo (armorial bookplate and gilt crest on spine), sold Christie's 6 October 1958.
A VERY RARE PRESENTATION COPY OF THE FIRST EDITION, inscribed on first blank "From the Author," in Bligh's own hand, "to Earl Howe" in a second hand. In 1790 Lord Howe was commander of the Channel fleet, having been First Lord of the Admiralty from 1783 to 1788. He had no sons but his youngest daughter married the Marquess of Sligo in 1787, this copy passing into the Sligo family library. Bligh presented copies to the Lords of the Admiralty and other influential people in the hope that his account of the mutiny would absolve him from any blame that might be levelled against him. This copy also includes a manuscript note to Mr. Nicol, publisher, from Admiralty House, 1784, requesting a first impression of Cook's last voyage for Lord Howe. Hill, p. 26. Ferguson 71.
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