AUCTION 23

 
 

The Rare English Edition, Complete and with Atlas in Original Wraps

With a Martin & Martin Map

 
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188. HUMBOLDT, Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Alexander & Aimé Jacques Alexandre Goujaud Bonpland. Political Essay on the Kingdom of New Spain. Containing Researches Relative to the Geography of Mexico, the Extent of its Surface and its political Division in Intendancies, the physical Aspect of the Country, the Population, the State of Agriculture and Manufacturing and Commercial Industry, the Canals Projected between the South Sea and Atlantic Ocean, the Crown Revenues, the Quantity of the Precious Metals which have flowed from Mexico into Europe and Asia, since the Discovery of the New Continent, and the Military Defence of New Spain. By Alexander de Humboldt. With Physical Sections and Maps, Founded on Astronomical Observations, and Trigonometrical and Barometrical Measurements. Translated from the Original French by John Black. London: Printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown; and H. Colburn; and W. Blackwood, and Brown and Crombie, Edinburgh, 1811. Text: Vol. I: [i-iii] iv-xvii [1, blank], [2], [i] ii-cxlv [1, blank], [1] 2-289 [1] pp.; Vol. II: [2], [1] 2-531 [1] pp.; Vol. III: [6], [1] 2-493 [1] pp., folded frontispiece engraved map and four statistical tables (see below); Vol. IV: [2], [1] 2-374, [102] pp., folded frontispiece with 8 engraved maps on one sheet (see below). London: Printed for Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown; and H. Colburn; and W. Blackwood, and Brown and Crombie, Edinburgh, 1811. Atlas: [4] pp., 2 aquatint plates; 3 folded engraved profiles; 4 engraved maps, 3 of which are folding including large map of New Spain. 8vo (21.5 x 14 cm). Text vols.: contemporary three-quarter reddish brown diced calf over red and blue marbled boards. Rebacked, original spines preserved and consolidated, some corners bumped, moderately rubbed. Text and maps with mild to moderate foxing and offsetting. Atlas: 8vo (22.7 x 14.5 cm), original blue drab wrappers, stitched, uncut, as issued, with contemporary ink note on upper wrapper (“Plates to Humboldt’s New Spain”). Spine of fragile paper wraps worn away, some mild chipping and abrasions to paper covers; preserved in quarter tan polished calf folding case with cloth chemise (spine chipped). Maps very fine except for minor offsetting and age-toning. Overall a very good to fine copy of a set difficult to find complete with the atlas and all the plates and maps.

Maps & Plates in Vol. III

I    [Frontispiece map] Map of the different Channels by which the precious metals flow from the one Continent to the other. [at lower left] Note: The Cyphers indicate Millions of double Piastras (fuertes) of Spain. at 4s. 4d 1/2. Neat line to neat line: 16 x 29.5 cm. Overall sheet size: 26 x 42.4 cm. Copper-engraved map. Entire world shown.

Four Statistical plates (misbound as indicated):

V    Geographical Divisions. Silver. Proportion in which Silver is produced in different parts of the World.

IV   Geographical Divisions. Value of the precious metals in Piastras. Proportion in which Gold & Silver is produced in the different parts of America.

III  Time. Value of the precious metals in Piastras. Quantity of Gold & Silver extract from Mines of Mexico.

II   Time. Value of the precious metals in Piastras. Produce of the Mines of America since its discovery.

Vol. IV

[Frontispiece map] Points of Separation and Projected Communications Between the South Sea and Atlantic Ocean with one larger map (numbered V) surrounded by 7 smaller maps, maps listed from upper left clockwise around Map V. Entire sheet: 44 x 37 cm.

I    Untitled including Vancouver Island and north to Slave Lake. Neat line to neat line: 10.4 x 7 cm.

II   Untitled map showing the Savananas east of the Sierra Verde, including Apache Land, the Rio Grande del Norte to El Paso, and part of northern Mexico. Neat line to neat line: 10.4 x 7 cm.

III  Untitled map showing the Amazon and south to Lima. Neat line to neat line: 10.4 x 7 cm.

IV   Untitled map showing the Gulf of St. George to Tierra del Fuego and the “Southern Ocean.” Neat line to neat line: 10.4 x 7 cm.

V    [Central map] Map of the Isthmus of Huasacalco Drawn up from the Itineraries of the Engineers Dn. Augustin Cramer & Dn. Miguel del Coral, by A. de Humboldt. [lower right] Engraved by W. Lowry. Showing Gulf of Mexico,“Intendencia of Vera Cruz,” “Part of the Kingdom of New Spain,” “Intendencia of Oaxaca,” “Part of the Kingdom of Guatemala,” to the Gulf of Tehuantepec. Neat line to neat line: 16 x 15.5 cm.

VI   Untitled map including Nicaragua, Gulf of Nicoya, “Great Equatorial Ocean.” Neat line to neat line: 10.2 x 8.9 cm.

VII  Untitled map showing lands around the Bay of Panama, including Panama City. Neat line to neat line: 10.2 x 8.9 cm.

VIII Untitled map showing Bay of Panama in north to “Pt. de Charambira” and at lower right: Note: From the Embarcadero de Colima the passage is 5 days to the town of Cali. Neat line to neat line: 10.2 x 8.9 cm.

Engravings in Atlas Volume in Wraps

[1]  Peak of Orizaba, seen from the forest of Xalapa [below left] A. Humboldt & F. Gmelin del. [below title] London: Published by Longman, Hurst, Rees & Orme, Septr. 20, 1810. [below right] J.C. Stadler sculpt. Dramatic aquatint of volcano smoking; shades of terracotta.

[2]  Volcanos of la Puebla, seen from the City of Mexico. [below title] London: Published by Longman, Hurst, Rees & Orme, Septr. 20, 1810. [below left] Lud Martin & Fr. Gmelin del. [below right] J.C. Stadler sculpt. Aquatint of volcano and mountain region near Puebla in shades of terracotta. Neat line to neat line: 9.5 x 16.7 cm.

[3]  Plan of the Port of Acapulco. [below neat line] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 15th. 1810 | W. Lowry sculp. Engraving with stylized fleur-de-lis, letters locating types of soil, such as sand and mud. Neat line to neat line: 19.5 x 11.6 cm.

[4]  Map of the Valley of Mexico and Neighboring Mountains Sketched on the Spot in 1804, by Don Louis Martin, and now modelled and corrected in 1807 from the Trigonometrical observations, and Barometrical measurements of M. de Humboldt by Jabbo Oltmann. [below neat line] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 22. 1810 | W. Lowry Sculp. Folded engraved map with various notes and symbols used as keys for locating capitals, etc. Neat line to neat line: 25 x 27 cm.

[5]  Plan of the Port of Veracruz.... [below neat line] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 15th. 1810 | Lowry Sc. Folded engraved map with lengthy note on Veracruz. Profile of land at top right. Neat line to neat line: 20 x 25.5 cm.

[6]  Physical Section of the Western Declivity of the Table Land of New Spain. (Road from Mexico to Acapulco) Drawn up from Barometrical measurement in 1803, by M. de Humboldt. [below neat line] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 7th. 1810 | Engraved by W. Lowry. Folded engraved profile extending from Acapulco to Mexico City with lengthy text. Overall sheet size: 22.5 x 55 cm.

[7]  Physical Section of the Eastern Declivity of the Table Land of New Spain. (Road from Mexico to Vera Cruz by Puebla & Xalapa) Drawn up from Barometrical & Trigonometrical measurement in 1804, by M. de Humboldt. [below map] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 11th. 1810 | Engraved by Wilson Lowry. Folded engraved profile extending from Mexico City to Veracruz with lengthy text. Overall sheet size: 22.5 x 53 cm.

[8]  A Map of New Spain from 16o. to 38o. North Latitude Reduced from the Large Map Drawn from Astronomical Observations at Mexico in the Year 1804, By Alexander de Humboldt, and Comprehending the Whole of the Information Contained in the Original Map, Except the Heights of the Mountains. [below map] Alex Macpherson, del. | Published as the act directs, Octr. 25, 1810, by Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown, Paternoster Row. | Cooper Sculp. Folded engraved map of New Spain from to the Gulf of Tehuantepec, including all of Texas. Neat line to neat line: 41.5 x 28.9 cm. Martin & Martin , Plate 17 (this edition), text from p. 109: “Humboldt’s map has been termed a magnificent cartographic achievement, which in its depiction of the West it surely is.” Streeter 1042 (see long note): “An atlas with maps on a reduced scale accompanies the London, 1811, edition of the Essay.” Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West 303*.

[9]  Section of the Central Table Land of Mexico, between the 19 and 21o. of North Latitude (Road from Mexico to Guanaxuato) Drawn up from Barometrical measurement by M. de Humboldt. [below map] Published by Longman & Co. Oct. 11th. 1810 | Engraved by Wilson Lowry. Folded engraved profile extending from Mexico City to Veracruz with lengthy text. Overall sheet size: 22.5 x 54.5 cm.

First English edition. Very rare. No complete set at auction in American Book Prices Current in the past thirty-five years. The text was published at Tübingen, 1809-1814; and a French edition followed at Paris in 1811; a folio atlas was published at Paris and Tübingen in 1808, and again in Paris in 1811.Sometimes the maps and plates found here in the separate atlas are bound into the text volumes. Cowan, p. 296. Hill I (pp. 149-150): “The rare English edition; a cornerstone in any collection on Mexico. Complete sets with the atlas of maps and plates are now extremely scarce.” Hill II 844: “Humboldt’s manifold interests and actions inaugurated the modern type of scientific exploration. He was equally famous as a geographer, naturalist, and humanist. Monuments in cities as far-flung as Philadelphia and Mexico City testify to his fame.” Howes H786: “Of superlative California interest.” Martin & Martin, Plate 17 (this edition), text from p. 109. Plains & Rockies IV:7a:4. Streeter 1042 (see long note): “An atlas with maps on a reduced scale accompanies the London, 1811, edition of the Essay.” Rader 1975. Raines, p. 121. Sabin 33715. Strathern 269ii. Streeter, Texas 1042n. Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West 303*. Cf. Palau 116977. See also Printing and the Mind of Man 320.

($1,500-3,000)

Sold. Hammer: $3,000.00; Price Realized: $3,675.00.

Auction 23 Abstracts

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