Narrative of an Expedition to Explore the River Zaire, usually called the Congo, in South Africa, in 1816. To which is Added, the Journal of Professor Smith; some General Observations on the Country and its Inhabitants; and an Appendix: Containing the Natural History of that part of the Kingdom of Congo through which the Zaire Flows. London, John Murray, 1818. AND: [MANUSCRIPTS]. Three related contemporary manuscripts tipped onto guards.
4to. Pp. (viii), lxxxii, 402, 401-498, (2). With one folding map and thirteen engraved plates, of which one is coloured by hand. Uncut copy in original boards, rebacked with original title label preserved. Map and plates somewhat browned but overall a crisp and clean copy. First edition of the official account of the first scientific expedition to the Congo River to find out if there was a connection with the Niger. The expedition was exposed to fatal problems and Captain Tuckey and several others of the crew died within three months of entering the river. Professor Christen Smith from Kew Gardens was one of the naturalists on the voyage. His journal is here included. The extensive introduction is written by John Barrow, who as second secretary to the Admiralty had organised the expedition. "A relatively important scientific travelogue, W.E. Leach having described a new species of Rafinesque's Ocythoë. J. Cranach gave an account of the collected animals at a whole, including 36 bird species" Wood p. 603. Stafleu 15287.Provenance: From the library of the radical reformer Francis Place (1771-1854) with his bookplate. Three related manuscripts tipped onto guards. The first two (comprising four large our four smaller pages) are apparently in the hand of Francis Place, supplying a digest of the contents of the work, and noting observations taken down from the mouth of Mr. Bevans, a young sailor who accompanied Captain Tuckey. The third manuscript (pp. 4) seems to be in Mr. Bevans' hand containing further critical comments on this work.
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Book number: 40043
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Keywords: Southern Africa, south africa, africa, afrika, african, afrique, travel, voyage, exploration, explore,