London: John Stockdale, 1793. First edition. Quarto, with 17 engraved plates, folding maps and charts; a fine uncut copy with large margins in period-style tree calf by Aquarius bookbinders of Sussex. Item #155
Beautifully bound copy of a pivotally important book on early Australian settlement. It was published by John Stockdale, the London bookseller who also issued the account of Sydney Cove written by Governor Phillip. John Hunter was an experienced officer of the First Fleet. In addition to describing the foundation of the British colonies at Sydney Cove and Norfolk Island, Hunter provides important navigational information on charting the east coast of Australia. The quality of the surveying and cartographic work is first rate, and this book is a cornerstone for any history of Australian mapping. Significantly, it is the first book about Norfolk Island and relates the foundation of the pioneer settlement, with input from Lieutenant-Governor Philip Gidley King. The engraved plates and maps are excellent impressions. They include famous scenes such as View of the Settlement at Sydney Cove, Port Jackson, 20th August 1788, which is the first published engraving of Sydney. Also included is a plate engraved by the poet William Blake titled A Family of New South Wales. Book references: Ferguson ‘Bibliography of Australia’ number 152; Hill Collection catalogue number 857; Wantrup ‘Australian Rare Books’ number 13.
Price (AUD): $9,000.00