The Three Voyages of Captain James Cook Round the World. - Captain James Cook

1821 - Longman, London
A remarkable seven volume set of all of Cook’s three voyages. Illustrated with twenty five striking aquatint plates, including frontispieces in each volume, large folding map, and a table.

‘The famous accounts of Captain Cook’s three voyages form the basis for any collection of Pacific books. In three great voyages Cook did more to clarify the geographical knowledge of the southern hemisphere than all his predecessors had done together. He was really the first scientific navigator and his voyages made great contributions to many fields of knowledge’. [Hill]
 
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Price HK$ 75,000



The Eastern Seas - George Windsor Earl

1837 - Wm. H. Allen and Co., London - First Edition
A very important association copy, with the signature of Margaret, Lady Brooke. Earl was a strong admirer of Raffles, who had died in 1826’ and Earl’s book ‘greatly impressed James Brooke, who was also an admirer of Raffles and his writings’. Brooke’s prospectus for his voyage to Singapore and then Borneo (published in October 1938), reflected the influence of Earl’s book.

Brooke later encouraged the work of Wallace, whose ‘
Wallace Line’, showing the boundary between Asian and Australian faunal regions, was critical to Wallace and Darwin’s evolutionary theory. But the ‘Line’ had been earlier presented to the Royal Geographical Society by Earl in 1845, and Wallace acknowledged that ‘Earl believed that there had been a former connection between Asia and Australia’. Darwin also wrote to Wallace, after reading a draft of his paper on Malay zoogeography, to ask: ‘Are you aware that Mr. W. Earl published several years ago the view of distribution of animals in Malay Archipelago in relation to the depth of the sea between the islands?’.

An entertaining and insightful work, with extensive chapters on Indonesia, Borneo, Malaysia, and Singapore, as well as a lengthy treatise in the Appendix titled ‘
Observations on the Commercial Resources of the Indian Archipelago’. Illustrated with four folding maps. 
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Price HK$ 15,000



South Australia - William Harcus

1876 - Sampson Low, London - First Edition
An informative, late 19th century guide to South Australia, compiled by Adelaide congregational minister, William Harcus, and published by ‘Authority of the Government of South Australia’. With interesting chapters on climate, population, government, land, railways, mining, the Murray River, the Trans-Australian Telegraph, exploration, immigration, agriculture, wine making and vineyards, flora and fauna, and meteorology, together with various statistical information, including one folding diagram showing the ‘progress of the province of South Australia’.

Profusely illustrated with 66 wonderfully detailed, full page engravings taken from photographs, and two folding lithographic maps of South Australia and Australia, housed in rear pocket.
 
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Price HK$ 2,800



In the Australian Bush - Richard Semon

1899 - Macmillan and Co., London - First Edition in English
German zoologist and evolutionary biologist Richard Semon’s account of his two year expedition to Australia, his purpose to study the country’s fauna, in particular mammals, marsupials, and lungfish. Most of Semon’s observations were made in the Burnett district in northern Queensland, though he also includes chapters on his travels through Brisbane, Cape York, Thursday Island and Torres Strait, New Guinea, and Java, together with an account of the customs, ceremonies, clothing, weapons, medicine, and decorative arts of tribes of Australian Aborigines in northern Queensland.

Profusely illustrated with more than 80 full page and in-text illustrations, many reproduced from the author’s photographs, and four folding colour maps.
 
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Price HK$ 2,000



A Traveller’s Notes - James Herbert Veitch

1896 - James Veitch & Sons, Royal Exotic Nursery - First and only edition, for private circulation
First and only edition of distinguished horticulturist Veitch’s compilation of notes and observations, collected during his 1891-93 tour, which took him through Ceylon, Delhi, Singapore, Java, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Australia and New Zealand, to inspect various Botanical Gardens and horticultural establishments, and undertake a plant collecting expedition.

Large and wonderfully illustrated with nine full page photogravure plates, together with a large folding colour map, and numerous illustrations throughout the text, taken from photographs by the author.

James Herbert Veitch (1868-1907) was the eldest son of John Gould Veitch, of the English Veitch nursery dynasty, started at the beginning of the 19th century, and quite possibly the most influential and powerful of all the great nurseries in the world, responsible for employing and financing the expeditions of such important botanists as Ernest Henry “Chinese” Wilson [1876-1930], Frederick William Thomas Burbidge [1847-1905], brothers William and Thomas Lobb, Charles Maries, and in turn responsible for some of the greatest plant discoveries of the 19th and early twentieth century. By the beginning of the First World War Veitch Nurseries had introduced 1,281 plants into cultivation, which were previously unknown or newly bred varieties.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



Queensland Past and Present 1897 - INSCRIBED - Thornhill Weedon

1898 - Edmund Gregory, Brisbane - Second Issue
A wonderful association copy with links to Hong Kong. Inscribed by Weedon to ‘G.F. Bowen’ – Sir George Ferguson Bowen – former Governor of Queensland (1859-1868) and later the Governor of Hong Kong (1883-1887), to front endpaper, and with the author’s ‘with compliment’s’ card laid in.

An uncommon copy of this informative review of Queensland, first published in 1896 and updated over the following years, undertaken while Weedon was compiler of statistics for the Registrar-General’s Office. Includes chapters on geography, population, production, trade, and a brief historical sketch, among others. Illustrated with a folding colour map of Queensland, together with sixteen full page black and white photographs.
 
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Price HK$ 2,000