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A voyage to the South Atlantic and round Cape Horn into the Pacific Ocean,

for the purpose of extending the spermaceti whale fisheries, and other objects of commerce, by ascertaining the ports, bays, harbours, and anchoring births, in certain islands and coasts in those seas at which the ships of the British merchants might be r

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London, Printed for the Author, by W. Bennett, Marsham Street, Westminster. Sold by A. Arrowsmith, Charles Street, Soho; Stockdale, Piccadilly; Edgerton, Charing Cross; Elmsly, Strand; and White, Fleet Street, 1798

A wide-margined copy of one of the most important voyages history of whaling, with great provenance.

Colnett had served as a midshipman on the Resolution on Captain Cook's second voyage. The voyage described here was a joint naval and commercial undertaking, primarily for the benefit of whaling interests, headed by the company of Samuel Enderby, which sought out new bases now that the Spanish ports were effectively out of bounds (as a result of the infamous Nootka Sound Incident, during which Colnett had been arrested by the Spanish in 1789) and that the Cape of Good Hope and St Helena were so distant from the new grounds in the Pacific. The main importance of this voyage, aboard the Rattler, 'lies in the fact that it pointed to the first sustained attempt to exploit the commercial possibilities of the Pacific in the 20 years after Cook's death' (D. Mackay, In the Wake

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First edition. 4to (29 x 23 cm.), iv, iii-vi, xviii, 180pp., engraved portrait, 6 folding maps, 3 plates, contemporary half calf, marbled boards, expertly rebacked, later endpapers, a very good copy.


Sabin 14546; Hill (2004), 338; Borba de Moraes p193; Howes C2140; Wagner (Northwest), p207; Graff 812; Streeter VI, 3494.

Stock ID:98467

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