[PETROVICH KRASHENINNIKOV, Stepan (1713-1755)]. The History of Kamtschatka, and the Kurilski Islands, with the Countries Adjacent, translated by James Grieve. London: R. Raikes, Gloucester for T. Jefferys, 1764. 4° (258 x 207mm). 2 engraved folding maps by T. Jeffreys and 5 engraved plates, 2 folding, type-ornament head- and tail-pieces and initials (variable light offsetting and spotting, clean marginal tear on R4, short tears on maps, one neatly-repaired). Contemporary English half calf over marbled boards, spine gilt in compartments, gilt morocco lettering-piece in one, speckled edges (a little rubbed, rebacked retaining original spine). Provenance: Hon. Richard Howard (1747/8-1816, later 4th Earl of Effingham, armorial bookplate on upper pastedown).
FIRST ENGLISH EDITION. KRASHENINNIKOV'S WORK INCLUDES EXCERPTS FROM STELLER'S NOTES AND THUS CONTAINS 'THE FIRST SCIENTIFIC ACCOUNT OF [KAMCHATKA AND THE KURIL ISLANDS]' (Hill). Krasheninnikov joined Bering's second expedition and explored Kamchatka with Steller, as his assistant; although Krasheninnikov then returned to St Petersburg, Steller's notes were available to him and the work was compiled from both men's researches: 'the inclusion of Steller's observations on America, made during his travels with Bering's second voyage, are an important part of this work, and constitute one of the earliest accounts of Alaska and the Aleutian Islands [...] This work details the customs, morals, and religion of the inhabitants of the Kamchatkan peninsula, and discusses the power exercised by the magicians. Also described are the differences between the dialects of the Kamchatkans and those of the Korsars and of the Kurile Islanders' (Hill). Originally published in Russia as Opisanie zemli Kamchatki (St Petersburg, 1755) -- therefore predating the posthumous publication of Steller's Beschreibung von dem Lande Kamtschatka by nearly 20 years -- this abridged translation by Grieve was the first appearance of the work outside Russia and the basis of the German and French editions of 1766 and 1767. Brunet III, col. 696; Hill 948; Howes K-265; Lada-Mocarski 12 (note); Sabin 38301.