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A Voyage Round the World, In the Years MDCCXL, I, II, III, IV. - George Anson, Richard Walter

1748 - Printed for the Author, London - First Edition
A finely bound ‘Royal Paper’ copy of this beautifully illustrated work which ‘has long occupied a distinguished position as a masterpiece of descriptive travel’ (Hill), and ‘a model of what such literature should be’ (Cox).

Containing forty-two copper-engraved maps, charts, views, and coastal profiles, all but one folding, including views of Brazilian harbours and cities, Acapulco, Tenian, Port St. Julian, Magellan’s Straits, the Bay of Manila, Saipan, Lama, Lantau, Chinese junks, and others, and large folding maps of South America, the Philippines, and the Pacific Ocean, as well as a twelve-page subscriber list, and the two-page instructions to the binder.

England, at war with Spain in 1739, equipped eight ships under the command of George Anson to harass the Spaniards on the western coast of South America for the purpose of cutting off Spanish supplies of wealth from the Pacific area. Seven ships were lost and of 900 men 600 perished. As usual, scurvy took an appalling toll.

The Spanish fleet sent to oppose the British ran into storms; provisions ran out and many ships were wrecked. Thus the primary objective of the expedition was not attained. Anson, however, continued taking prizes off the Pacific coast during 1741-42, and in June 1743, near the Philippines, he captured the Spanish galleon
Nostra Seigniora de Cabadonga and its treasure of £400,000 sterling, which allowed Anson and the surviving members of his crew to reach England much the richer. 
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Price HK$ 59,000



Real Sailor-Songs - John Ashton (Editor)

1891 - The Leadenhall Press, London - First Edition
A magnificent and large folio, containing 129 historical naval songs in full page and broadsheet format, charmingly illustrated with over 200 engravings.

One third of the songs celebrate the great British naval victories up to the end of the 18th century, the balance gathered under the headings of - ‘Press Gang’, ‘Disaster’, ‘Ashore’, ‘Love’, and ‘Miscellaneous’.
 
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Price HK$ 6,000



The Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers

1903 - Smith, London - First Edition, First Impression
A crisp, clean and rare first edition, finely bound.

Written when Childers, an accomplished yachtsman, was thirty years old. Highlighting the encroaching conflict with Germany, the novel was highly influential and is actually credited with the founding of British naval bases at Invergordon and Scapa Flow; newly regarded as strategically important after examination of the scenarios in Childers' text. Winston Churchill later gave the book the credit for persuading public opinion to fund vital measures against the German naval threat.

Contentiously described as the first modern spy thriller, vying for the title with Kipling's '
Kim', published two years earlier. 
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Price HK$ 24,000



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

1821 - Longman, London
A handsomely bound 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]

On his first voyage, 25 August 1768 to 12 July 1771, Cook circumnavigated New Zealand and for the first time explored the east coast of Australia, of which he took possession for Great Britain; he also sailed through the straits separating New Guinea and Australia. On the second, and historically most important, voyage (13 July 1772 to 30 July 1775) he began by cruising as far south as possible around the edge of the antarctic ice. He again visited New Zealand and, cruising through the Pacific, discovered, or explored again, many of the islands, in particular New Caledonia, Palmerston and Norfolk Islands, Easter Island, the Marquesas, New Hebrides, Tonga, the South Sandwich Islands and South Georgia. The third voyage (11 July 1776 to 4 October 1780) was undertaken to find the North-West Passage from Europe to the East. After again visiting Tasmania, New Zealand and many Pacific Islands, Cook sailed on to North America, discovering on the way the Cook Islands and the Hawaiian group. He charted the North American coast from Oregon as far north as the Bering Strait, where ice turned him back. On the way back the great explorer was killed [in 1779] in a fight with natives in Hawaii.
 
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Price HK$ 52,000



The Three Voyages of Captain James Cook, with "The Death of Captain Cook" Plate - James Cook, John Hawkesworth, James King

1773 - Strahan, London - Second Edition, First Edition, Second Edition
A complete set of the best possible editions, superbly bound in full tree calf and with the additional ‘Death of Captain Cook’ drawn by the John Weber who witnessed the dispute and ensuing fight. Eight quarto volumes and the elephant folio volume of plates. Magnificently illustrated with two hundred and five engraved charts and plates, many of which are double page or larger.

There is no greater set of travel works, Cook was the first scientific navigator, these three voyages made great contributions to numerous fields of knowledge,, and did more to clarify the geographical knowledge of the southern hemisphere than his predecessors had done together [Hill].

The first voyage is in its second and best edition, complete with the ‘
Directions for placing the cuts’ and the ‘Chart of the Straights of Magellan’, and with the new Preface containing Hawkesworth's virulent eight-page reply to Dalrymple's whining reviews of the first edition, and the whole volume revised by the voyage's astronomer William Wales.

The third voyage is in its second and best edition, with the printing by Hughs (rather than Strahan who printed the first edition) with the text itself entirely re-set. Isaac Smith presenting a set on behalf of Cook's widow in 1821 noted that '
I am desired by Mrs Cook to request your acceptance of the 4 books sent herewith being her Husbands last Voyage round the World, as a mark of her respect the letter press of the second edition being much superior to the first both in paper & letter press' (quoted by Forbes, Hawaiian National Bibliography, 85). King George III's copy of the official account, preserved in the British Library, is also an example of this second edition. This particular set with variant title pages, dated correctly, but without edition statement or vignette of Royal Society medal. 
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Price HK$ 500,000



A Complete and Universal Dictionary of Signals for the boats of Her Majesty's Fleet - Arthur Parry Eardley-Wilmot, Commander Royal Navy

1850 - W. J. Cleaver, London - First Edition
A rare first edition of Vice-Admiral A.P. Eardley-Wilmot’s compendious Dictionary of Signals.

Inscribed by Eardley-Wilmot to Sir John Cam Hobhouse, who was a close of friend of Lord Byron and the ‘best man’ at Byron’s wedding.

In contemporary binding and illustrated with twenty two plates of which eight are hand-coloured. Housed in later bespoke slipcase of card and carbon fibre sail material.

Besides an ordinary flag-signalling plan, it contains the following systems: Homograph to be made with a sword -Tiller-StickStretcher, and a Handkerchief or Flag; with Hats, Caps, Balls or Flags rolled up; with Oars, Boathooks, Stretchers or Thwarts; numbered Balls; Flags and Yards for Calms; Distant Signals; Signal Box for Day and Night; Semaphoric Signs (Pasley’s); Telegraph with Four Balls, Boat Hook Staff and Mast; and Semaphore with Boats’ Thwarts.
 
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Price HK$ 12,000



Architectura Navalis - bound with - Architectura Civilis, Nova & Antiqua - Josephum Furttenbach, Georg Andreas B

1629 - Johan Saurn, Ulm - First Editions
A stunning, clean and complete copy of Joseph Furttenbach’s famous treaty on shipbuilding, Architectura Navalis with double-page engraved title, title in red and black, twenty stunning double-page engraved plates showing boat design, and various types of boats many engaged in action with other boats and monsters of the sea. Furttenbach was a highly influential German architect, who attempted to cover all fields of architecture in his writings. Böckler corresponded with Furttenbach and his works on architecture were intended to contribute to the rebuilding of Germany after the devastation of the Thirty Years War, his Architectura Civilis, Nova & Antiqua presents a comparative treatment of the Orders [Architectural Styles] and is illustrated with forty engraved plates, woodcut printer’s device and red and black text to title page, woodcut head pieces, and initials.  
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Price HK$ 95,000



The Three Lieutenants, or, Naval Life in the Nineteenth Century - W. H. G. Kingston

1897 - Griffith Farran Browne &, London
Illustrations by Charles J. de Lacy. From the Boys’ Own Favourite Library series. The second novel in Kingstons series which began with ‘The Midshipmen’. A lovely copy in pictorial boardsand gilt edges.

Kingston's reputation was made by these books, that first appeared about 1860, and dealt with an officer's life in the Navy at about that time. By an extraordinary coincidence, the three young men who had met as midshipmen, get postings that enable them to keep their friendships alive when they are lieutenants. Another old friend is Admiral Triton, who, though retired, takes a great interest in their careers.
 
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Price HK$ 900



 
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