Lot 267

COOK (Captain James) & KING (James). A Voyage to the Pacific Ocean undertaken by the command of His Majesty, for making discoveries in the Northern Hemisphere. To determine the position and extent of the west side of North America; its distance from Asia; and the practicability of a northern passage to Europe. Performed under the direction of Captains COOK, CLERKE, and GORE in his Majesty's ships the Resolution and Discovery, in the years 1776, 1777, 1778, 1779 and 1780. In three volumes. Vol. I and II written by Captain James COOK, F.R.S. Vol. III by Captain James KING, LL.D. and F.R.S. [.] London, Nicol and Cadell, 1784.
3 vol. grand in-4 of [8]-xcvi-421 pp. ; [12]-549 pp. ; [12]-558-[1] pp. Blond calf, smooth spine decorated with gilt fillets and roulette and large and beautiful gilt irons representing a sailing vessel, green morocco title and tomaison p., triple gilt filet framing the plates, roulette on the cups and the hunts, lemon slices (spine binding, Bozerian).
Original edition of Cook's third voyage. Text alone, in English, without the atlas, but complete with the 24 maps and dimensional views engraved out of text folding for the 3 volumes of text.
Cook's third and final voyage, then accompanied by an elite crew including William Bligh, George Vancouver, and James Burney, was to find the Northeast Passage. After a stopover in Tasmania and New Zealand, Cook travelled north, discovering the Christmas and Sandwich Islands that would become Hawaii. Cook mapped the west coast of America from Northern California to the Bering Strait before being stopped by ice. It was while returning to Hawaii for the winter that he was massacred by natives on board a ship.
"The official publication of Captain Cook's Third Voyage, and arguably the single most important book on the Hawaiian Islands, this documents all aspects of Hawaiian culture at the point of discovery by Europeans. It is a magnificent summation of all the public and private journals, logs, drawings, and other observations made during the course of the voyage and is as an important a record of the exploration of the North Pacific as Cook's first two voyages had been for the South Pacific. It is in fact one of the most important English books published in the last quarter of the eighteenth century", Forbes.
3 or 4 slight dark spots on the plates, small holes and a fine gallery of worms on the jaws of the first volume.
Very nice copy in a superb Bozerian binding.