21 September 2005,
Price realised GBP 3,840
GBP 2,000 - GBP 3,000
PIERRE FRANÇOIS XAVIER DE CHARLEVOIX (1682-1761)
Histoire et Description Generale de la Nouvelle France avec Le Journal Historique d'un Voyage fait par ordre du Roi dans l'Amérique Septentrionnale. Paris: Didot, 1744. 3 volumes, 4° (255 x 190mm). Titles in red and black. 28 engraved maps or plans, 25 of these double-page or folding, and 44 engraved plates on 22 folding sheets, engraved vignettes and cul-de-lampes. (Tear with small loss in bottom margin of 3Q2 in Vol. I.) Contemporary French mottled calf, spines gilt in compartments, gilt morocco lettering-pieces in 2, others decorated with double-flower tools, red edges (extremities lightly rubbed, spine caps and extremities repaired). Provenance: Forbes family, Fintray House, Aberdeenshire (18th-century bookplates).
FIRST EDITION OF THE FIRST GENERAL HISTORY OF CANADA, and one of the best works on Canada (Le Clerc). Charlevoix landed at Quebec, and surveyed the French settlements and trade routes along the St. Laurent and Mississippi valleys. Volume II includes a lengthy description of numerous plants, many native to Canada. His Nouvelle France 'is one of the best authorities concerning various Indian tribes, some of which no longer exist. The laborious accuracy with which the work was executed can be estimated by the fact that the maps, dated 1743, are marked with the latest discoveries, in 1742, in the extreme north of America' (Lande). Most of the maps, including the important map of North America, are after Nicholas Bellin. The 'Chronology' is here bound in volume III. The work was issued under a variety of imprints in 1744, with no priority. Howes C-307; Lande 125; Le Clerc 698; Sabin 12135.
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