FLEURIEU, Charles Pierre Claret de, Comte (1738-1810). Voyage autour du monde, pendant les années 1790, 1791, et 1792, par Etienne Marchand, précéde d'une Introduction Historique, auquel on a joint des recherches sur les Terres Australes de Drake et un examen critique du Voyage de Roggeween. Paris: De l'Imprimerie de la République, An VI [-VIII, 1798-1800].
4 volumes, 4to (248 x 197 mm). 16 engraved folding maps bound at end of volume four. (Some occasional spotting.) Contemporary quarter calf gilt (2 labels chipped, covers a bit rubbed).
FIRST EDITION of the full account of this major French voyage. Marchand had met Portlock at St. Helena in 1788 and had learned from him of the possibilities of lucrative fur-trading between the northwest coast of America and China. He persuaded the firm of Baux in Marseilles to finance a Pacific expedition. While a commercial endeavor, the voyage was nevertheless important for the history of discovery in the Pacific and along the northwest coast. Not only was Marchand's voyage one of the quickest circumnavigations of the century -- the entire expedition only lasted twenty months -- but it was also one of only two French circumnavigations completed in the course of a single voyage in over a century. Detailed maps are included of Alaska and the Northwest coast, the Marquesas, and Hawaii. A highly important and authoritative work for the history of the exploration of the Northwest coast. Hill, pp.105-6; Lada-Mocarski 54; Sabin 24751. (4)