Wanderings in New South Wales, Batavia, Pedir Coast, Singapore, and China; being the journal of a naturalist in those countries during 1832, 1833, and 1834. George BENNETT.
Wanderings in New South Wales, Batavia, Pedir Coast, Singapore, and China; being the journal of a naturalist in those countries during 1832, 1833, and 1834.

Wanderings in New South Wales, Batavia, Pedir Coast, Singapore, and China…
Wanderings in New South Wales, Batavia, Pedir Coast, Singapore, and China; being the journal of a naturalist in those countries during 1832, 1833, and 1834.

London: Richard Bentley, 1834.

Two volumes, octavo, with an aquatint frontispiece in each volume (Bugong Mountain, NSW, in vol. 1, top border just shaved by the binder; the European Factory at Canton in vol. 2), errata slip laid down; in a very good 19th-century binding of red half calf with double black labels, marbled boards; armorial bookplate in each volume.

Owned by a friend of Lord Byron

A very attractive copy of this travel classic by 'the greatest of the physician naturalists of Australia' (ADB). Bennett made two visits to Australia before permanently settling in Sydney in 1836, after which he established a successful practice and became a leading figure in colonial science holding numerous positions in bodies such as the newly-established Australian Museum, the Acclimatization Society, and the Zoological Society.

A very attractive copy of this travel classic by 'the greatest of the physician naturalists of Australia' (ADB). Bennett made two visits to Australia before permanently settling in Sydney in 1836, after which he established a successful practice and became a leading figure in colonial science holding numerous positions in bodies such as the newly-established Australian Museum, the Acclimatization Society, and the Zoological Society.

During these two early visits to Australia, in 1829 and 1832, Bennett travelled extensively throughout New South Wales observing conditions amongst the settlers, convicts and various Aboriginal tribes. He is a good source for his observations on colonial farms, a smallpox epidemic among the Aborigines, the kangaroo hunt, koalas, wombats, emus, and other Australian flora and fauna. He journeyed inland to make observations on fauna, specifically the platypus. He also collected many fossils and natural history specimens for the comparative anatomist Richard Owen. Bennett's zoological work during these trips earned him the gold medal of the Royal College of Surgeons.

This eminently readable and very interesting account of Bennett's extensive Pacific wanderings also includes descriptions of various Asian ports visited during the voyages. Of particular interest are the descriptions of the large Ungka ape which Bennett collected in Singapore, and the native girl he rescued from the New Hebrides, whom he named Sophia. She accompanied him to London, but died in Plymouth three years later. He includes descriptions of New Zealand flax and its manufacture in Sydney, as well as matters as various as leprosy, the opium trade, the museum at Macao, Chinese plantations, and the cocoa-nut tree.

Provenance: This copy in a very good period binding has a good provenance, with the armorial bookplate in each volume of John Fitzgibbon, Baron Fitzgibbon in the British peerage and second Earl of Clare in the Irish peerage. A close friend of Lord Byron (who could never hear the name Clare "without a murmur of the heart"), Fitzgibbon was a significant colonial administrator, governor of Bombay at the time of this publication and a member of the Royal Asiatic Society; Bennett's <em>Wanderings</em> would thus have been of obvious interest to him.

Abbey 'Travel in Aquatint and Lithography 1770-1860', 527; Cordier, Bibliotheca Sinica, 2112; Ferguson, 1743; Hocken, p.55; Howgego, B30; NZNB, 411; Whittell, p. 49; Wood, p. 231.

Condition Report: An excellent set.

Price (AUD): $3,400.00

US$2,401.33   Other currencies

Ref: #4106614

Condition Report