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Captain Cook

Whitby, a small town on the East coast of Yorkshire, has a fame which belies its modest population (circa 13,000).  It was where Count Dracula came ashore in England in Bram Stoker's novel. It was also where the Synod of Whitby between the Roman and Celtic Churches, in 664, determined the dates of Easter. It is also the breeding ground for some of the finest oysters in England. It’s greatest fame, however, is that it is the adopted town of Captain James Cook, a man who can fairly claim to be the greatest explorer of the modern era, and the place where the first ship to take him to the Pacific Ocean, HMS Endeavour, was built.

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 the first truly scientific navigator and his voyages made great contributions to many fields of knowledge.  He left behind him a body of work including the official accounts of each of his voyages, the last of which includes a magnificent atlas of plates with stunning views of the South Pacific.  In addition the scientists and crew who took part in the voyages published numerous works, as did the artists who journeyed with Cook to the Pacific: Webber’s Views in the South Seas being the only colour plate book relating to Cook’s voyages to have been published.

Read more: The Layered Legacy of Captain Cook | Shapero Rare Books Blog | Shapero Rare Books

 

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  1. First edition. 4to (30.75 x 25 cms), [4],102, [2 (errata)] pp., uncut in original boards, neatly rebacked to style, light brown stain to inner upper quarter of pages through to C1, spotting to last 6 pages, overall a super rarity in excellent condition, well preserved in modern blue cloth box, red morocco label.

    £50,000
  2. First edition. 3 volumes, 4to, 23 (of 24) engraved plates, some folding, lacks plate XXIII (A woman of Eaoo) which is frequently bound in the accompanying atlas (not present with this set), light waterstaining to upper margin vol ii, ocasional light spotting and offsetting, contemporary calf gilt, covers with gilt roll-tool borders and with inlaid green morocco label with the initials 'EH' surmounted with a coronet, spines in six compartments, red and green labels to second and third, others with gilt thistle device, raised bands, sometime rebacked.

    £3,750
 

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