Dernier voyage du capitaine Cook autour du monde, où se trouvent les circonstances de sa mort ... par Henri Zimmermann témoin oculaire. Bern: Nouvelle Société Typographique, 1782. 8° (190 x 121mm). Woodcut title vignette and headpiece. (Occasional very light browning and spotting, very light marginal dampstaining on latter leaves.) 20th-century tan morocco backed boards, spine lettered in gilt, red edges.
FIRST FRENCH EDITION. 'BOTH FRENCH EDITIONS ARE OF GREAT RARITY AND ARE OF INTEREST NOT ONLY ON THAT ACCOUNT BUT BECAUSE OF THE ADDITIONAL MATTER WHICH THEY CONTAIN' (Holmes). Heinrich Zimmermann, a native of Speyer, Germany, was coxswain in the Discovery, and 'from the start of the journey he determined to keep a shorthand journal of the voyage and retain it, despite the instructions which, as he doubtless learned from those who had sailed with Cook on his first or second voyage, would in due course be forthcoming, demanding the surrender of all logs and journals' (Holmes, 40). Reise um die Welt mit Capitain Cook was first published in Mannheim in 1781, but, as Hill notes, 'was suppressed in Germany at the request of the British Admiralty' (the Göttingen: 1781 and Mannheim: 1782 editions recorded by some bibliographies are most probably ghosts), and is notable both as one of the first published accounts of Cook's Third Voyage, and, more specifically, one of the earliest accounts of Cook's death (found on pp. 90-1 of this edition). The present edition, published in the year following the first, is of interest not only as the first French edition of Zimmermann's account (pp. 1-117), but also for the addition of the 'Abrégé de la vie du capitaine Cook' on pp. 118-172. This biographical sketch is a translation of an article in Göttingsches Magazin der Wissenschaften un Litteratur (1780), the accuracy of which has been confirmed by Mr Lichtenberg ('célèbre professeur' of Göttingen) and Johann Georg Adam Forster (who accompanied Cook on the Second Voyage); the account of the Third Voyage is based on information furnished by both Zimmermann and Bartholomäus Lohmann, Zimmermann's compatriot and the quarter-master of the Discovery. This edition was followed by a second published in Bern in 1783, varying from the first only in the reset type, new decorations, and the amendment of the imprint and a few typographic errors. Beddie 1629; Hawaiian National Bibliography 47; Holmes 44; Spence p.21. Cf. Hocken p.20 (citing this edition); Sabin 106346 (citing the Bern: 1783 reprint of this edition).