No. 608. Loi relative à M. de la Peyrouse, & à l'impression des Cartes par lui envoyées. Donnée à Paris, le 4 Mai 1791 [caption-title]. LA PEROUSE, ASSEMBLÉE NATIONALE.
No. 608. Loi relative à M. de la Peyrouse, & à l'impression des Cartes par lui envoyées. Donnée à Paris, le 4 Mai 1791 [caption-title].
No. 608. Loi relative à M. de la Peyrouse, & à l'impression des Cartes par lui envoyées. Donnée à Paris, le 4 Mai 1791 [caption-title].

Loi relative à M. de la Peyrouse, & à l'impression des Cartes par lui envoyées…
No. 608. Loi relative à M. de la Peyrouse, & à l'impression des Cartes par lui envoyées. Donnée à Paris, le 4 Mai 1791 [caption-title].

Tours: Auguste Vauquer, Imprimeur du Département d'Indre & Loire, 1791.

Quarto, 4 pp., woodblock ornament and drop title; fine and uncut, preserved in modern marbled wrappers.

'Publish what we have'

The National Assembly decree calling for the publication of all accounts and charts of the La Pérouse expedition. Three different imprints have been recorded -- Paris and Grenoble versions have been described as well as the present issue from Tours.

The National Assembly decree calling for the publication of all accounts and charts of the La Pérouse expedition. Three different imprints have been recorded -- Paris and Grenoble versions have been described as well as the present issue from Tours.

The Paris issue is held by two Australian libraries (State Library of New South Wales and the National Library) and it is recorded by several bibliographers (Allen's Check List p. 10; McLaren 134; Ferguson 107), and also appears in the exhibition catalogue Centenaire de la mort de Lapérouse (Paris, 1888; number 48). However, the Tours and Grenoble imprints are both scarcer, and have escaped notice by the bibliographers mentioned. This example has a manuscript certification dated 24 June 1791 for the district of Tours.

In this second of two La Pérouse decrees of 1791 the government commits to the publication of the maps and narrative for the official account of the voyage. The publication would be six years in the making, first appearing in 1797 as Voyage de la Pérouse autour du Monde, and would come to be regarded as one of the greatest narratives of maritime exploration ever published. This decree too is printed at the start of the official voyage account. The text of the decree makes special reference to La Pérouse's Australian landing and copious correspondence relayed to France throughout the voyage ('envoyées par M. la Peyrouse, de la partie de son voyage jusqu'à Botanibay…'); famously, La Pérouse's last report was forwarded by Governor Phillip from Port Jackson.

For the Paris imprint only: Allen, p.10; McLaren, 134; Ferguson, 107.

Price (AUD): $5,750.00  other currencies Ref: #4011316

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