A VOYAGE TO SOUTH AMERICA, by John Adams - 1806 [4th ed., 2 vols., maps]


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A Voyage to South America:

Describing at large the Spanish Cities, Town, Provinces, etc. on the Extensive Continent;

taken by Don George Juan and Don Antonio de Ulloa, Captains of the Spanish Navy

translated from the original Spanish with notes and observations, and an account of the Brazils, by John Adams

Fourth edition, two volumes.  London:  John Stockdale et al., 1806  

Hardback set is overall in VERY GOOD condition.

  • Marled cloth covers, three-quarter leatherbound, have gilt ruling and spines ornamented in gilt with colored title labels. 
  • Boards show some age, wear to shoulders, edgewear, some rippling of cloth, a frayed edge at back cover volume 1.  Corners are bumped and frayed, with exposed board.  See photos.  
  • Spines have gilt text a little effaced,  with chipped, frayed ends.  See photos.
  • Bindings are firm.  
  • Marble end papers/ pastedowns show little sign of age or wear; feps show some bookseller marks in pencil.  
  • Frontispiece, a foldout map of South America (Plate III) is present.
  • Foldout maps are present, clear and bright. 
  • Ex libris book features an owner's bookplate on front pastedown of vol. 1.  See photos.
  • Interior is gently age-toned.  Inside pages are free of writing and intentional marks.
  • Text block edges have all edges inked yellow. 
  • PS2023.1115

Vol. 1 479 pages; Vol. 2 419 pages plus Index.  5 x 8 inches.

A handsome two-volume set in contemporary bindings, with a complete set of foldout plates in very good condition, of this important 18th century work describing South America, its natural history, human settlement, and cities.  

These volumes contain the English translation of the account of South America made by Antonio de Ulloa (1716–95), Spanish scientist and mathematician, whose journey to South America lasted from 1735-1744.  First published in 1758, the work was very popular, producing five subsequent editions.  This, the fourth edition of 1806, offers expanded notes and explanations, as the translator John Adams explains in his Preface.  Adams spent many years in South America, so his translation is knowledgeable, and the section on Brazil is his work.

Together, the two volumes provide insights into the social, religious and economic institutions of colonial South America.  Volume 2 contains descriptions of the cities and provinces of Lima, Concepción (in Chile), and Buenos Aires, and also of the British colony of Boston, visited on the return journey.  Additionally, there is the first ethnological description in English of the indigenous peoples of Brazil.

With seven engraved, foldout plates with maps and illustrations.

AS IS! Please see photos. More photos available upon request.

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