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    An Essential Aid to Seventeenth-Century Navigators

    Jan Huygen van Linschoten. Itinerarium; Ofte Schip-Vaert Naer Doost Ofte Portugaels Indien... [bound with:] Reys-Gheschrift Van De Navigatien Der Portugaloysers In Orienten... [bound with:] Beschrijvinge Vande Gantsche Custe Van Guinea... Amsterdam. 1644. Three parts bound in one volume. A later edition of one of the great classics of early travel literature (originally issued in 1596). Folio (approximately 12.5 x 7.5 inches). [8],160, [8],13-147, [90] pages. Three engraved title pages, portrait of Linschoten, and thirty (of thirty-six) double-page plates (several folding), all in handsome original color. Folio. Old boards, skillfully rebacked in calf, retaining original leather labels. Some marginal waterstaining, some browning to text leaves, plates clean, one plate trimmed. Overall very good. Lacks the maps.

    The first part, the Itinerarium, relates Linschoten's experiences during more than a decade in the East Indies before returning to Holland to write his book. This is the best account for that era of the sailing routes to the East Indies and the Portuguese establishments in India, the Spice Islands, and southeast Asia. From the time of its publication until the end of the next century, Linschoten was an essential aid to navigators in the east Indies, and his book made him "the leading geographical figure in Renaissance Holland" (Penrose). Linschoten wrote three separate works, the first being described above. The three are always found together, although they have separate title pages and paginations in all editions. The second section, entitled Reys-Gheschrift Van De Navigatien Der Portugaloysers In Orienten...Als Ook Van De Gantsche Custen Van Brasilien...Item Van't Vaste Land Enn Die Voor Eylanden Las Antilas Ghenaemt, Van Spaensch Indien, provides sailing directions for the East Indies, as well as for Brazil and the West Indies. The third section, Beschrijvinge Vande Gantsche Custe Van Guinea...En Tegen Over De Cabo De S. Augustijn In Brasilien..., describes the coast of Africa and South Atlantic navigation, as well as Brazil. All parts contain information concerning America, although most of it is concentrated in the second and third parts. Chronologically, this is the next to last edition of Linschoten, the final one appearing in 1663. This copy, while lacking the maps and several plates, is interesting due to its handsome contemporary coloring of the plates, all illustrating scenes in the East Indies.

    European Americana 644/97, 644/98, 644/99. Sabin 41363. Tiele-Muller, p.101.

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    Auction Dates
    April, 2012
    11th Wednesday
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