An Authentic Narrative of a Voyage performed by Captain Cook and Captain Clerke, in His Majesty's Ships Resolution and Discovery… including a faithful Account of all their Discoveries, and the unfortunate Death of Captain Cook… The Third Edition. COOK: THIRD VOYAGE, William ELLIS.
An Authentic Narrative of a Voyage performed by Captain Cook and Captain Clerke, in His Majesty's Ships Resolution and Discovery… including a faithful Account of all their Discoveries, and the unfortunate Death of Captain Cook… The Third Edition.

An Authentic Narrative of a Voyage performed by Captain Cook… The Third Edition…
An Authentic Narrative of a Voyage performed by Captain Cook and Captain Clerke, in His Majesty's Ships Resolution and Discovery… including a faithful Account of all their Discoveries, and the unfortunate Death of Captain Cook… The Third Edition.

London: G. Robinson, J. Sewell; and J. Debrett, 1784.

Two volumes, octavo, with a folding chart and 21 engraved plates, bound with half-titles and directions for placing the cuts; in twentieth-century red morocco, gilt.

A private account of Cook's third voyage

A most attractive set: this is the uncommon third edition of an important account of Cook's third voyage. Written by the assistant surgeon Ellis, it is 'an important supplement to the official account' (Forbes).

A most attractive set: this is the uncommon third edition of an important account of Cook's third voyage. Written by the assistant surgeon Ellis, it is 'an important supplement to the official account' (Forbes).
Ellis, surgeon's mate and talented amateur artist, sailed first on the Discovery and later on the Resolution. During the voyage he was esteemed by Captain Clerke as a 'very worthy young man'. On his return he was in financial straits and, despite the prohibition by the Admiralty of the publication of any unauthorised account of the voyage, sold his narrative to a London publisher for fifty guineas. It was published over his name, and was thus the first account of the expedition to acknowledge its authorship, earning the condemnation of Sir Joseph Banks, who wrote to him in January 1782 that 'I fear it will not in future be in my power to do what it might have been, had you asked and followed my advice'. Ellis died in 1785 after a fall from the main mast of a ship lying at Ostend.
Ellis' narrative includes a chapter devoted to their visit to Van Diemen's Land in January 1777, in the course of which Ellis painted a famous watercolour view of Adventure Bay, now in the National Library of Australia. There is much valuable information on Alaska, the Northwest Coast, and Hawaii, and the attractive engraved plates, after the author's drawings, include eight of Hawaii, two of Alaska, and three of the Northwest Coast. The plates show Ellis to have been a talented amateur artist, and represent a significant and very early contribution to the graphic record of the voyage.
This third edition is quite rare, and Forbes was only able to locate some six copies internationally. Testament to its rarity is the fact that it is in neither of the catalogues of the Hill nor the Kroepelien collections of voyage books.

Beaglehole, III, p. ccvii; Beddie, 1601; Forbes, 'Hawaiian National Bibliography', 41; Hawaii One Hundred, 3 (first edition); O'Reilly & Reitman, 429.

Price (AUD): $6,400.00  other currencies     Ref: #4503908

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