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]
  The First Voyage 1768-71
Primarily of a scientific nature. The Endeavour initially sailed to Tahiti to observe the transit of the planet Venus in order to calculate the earth’s distance from the sun. Another purpose was to determine if an inhabitable continent existed in the mid-latitudes of the Southern Hemisphere. Upon leaving Tahiti, Cook named and charted the Society Islands and then continued southwest to New Zealand. His circumnavigation and exploration of that country also resulted in a detailed survey. Cook proceeded to Australia, where he charted the eastern coast for 2,000 miles, naming the area New South Wales. As a result of these surveys, both Australia and New Zealand were annexed by Great Britain. In addition to these explorations, the Endeavour returned to England without a single death from scurvy among its men, an historic feat at the time. The combination of these accomplishments brought Cook prominence, promotion, and the opportunity to lead further expeditions. [UCLA]

The Second Voyage (1772-75)
[The] second expedition to circumnavigate the globe as far south as possible in search of any southern continents. Cook proved there was no “Terra Australis”, which supposedly lay between New Zealand and South America, but became convinced that there must be land beyond the ice fields. The men of this expedition became the first to cross the Antarctic Circle. Further visits were made to New Zealand, and on two sweeps Cook made a series of discoveries including Easter Island, the Marquesas, the Tonga Islands, the New Hebrides, New Caledonia, Norfolk Island, and a number of smaller islands. Rounding Cape Horn, on the last part of the voyage, Cook discovered and charted South Georgia, after which he called at Cape Town, St. Helena and Ascension, and the Azores. This voyage produced a vast amount of information concerning the Pacific peoples and islands, proved the value of the chronometer as an aid in finding longitude, and improved techniques for preventing scurvy. [UCLA]

The Third Voyage (1776-77)
Organized to seek the Northwest Passage and to return [the islander] Omai to Tahiti. Officers of the crew included William Bligh and George Vancouver. After calling at New Zealand, and several pacific islands, they sailed north and discovered Christmas Island and the Hawaiian Islands. Cook charted the American west coast from Northern California through the Bering Strait as far north as latitude 70 degrees 44 minutes before he was stopped by pack ice. He returned to Hawaii for the winter and was killed in an unhappy skirmish with the natives. Charles Clarke took command and after he died six months later, the ships returned to England under John Gore. Despite hostilities with the United States and France, the scientific nature of this expedition caused the various governments to exempt these vessels from capture. [UCLA].

Printing and the Mind of Man 223. Hill, Pacific Voyages 783, 358, 361, 362.

Eight volumes. pp. [2] xii 398 [2]; [2] vii [1] 368 [2]; [2] vii [1] 372 [2]; [2] viii 304; [2] vii [1] 472 [2]; [2] xii 503 [3]; [2] xi [1] 462 [2].
  Handsomely bound in period full tree calf, re-backed with original gilt spines laid down, gilt tooled borders and dentelles, morocco lettering pieces.   Condition: A near fine set, clean and tight, with minor spotting to end-papers, and short tear to map at stub.   Ref: 102001   Price: HK$ 75,000