Perry's Japan Expedition 3 vols. 1856

PBA Galleries

2015-11-02 12:15:38

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Lot 180: Author: Perry, M(atthew) C(albraith). Title: Narrative of the Expedition of an American Squadron to the China Seas and Japan, Performed in the Years 1852, 1853, and 1854, under the Command of Commodore M.C. Perry, United States Navy, by Order of the Government of the United States. Place Published: Washington. Publisher: A.O.P. Nicholson, Printer. Date Published: 1856. Description: Compiled by Francis L. Hawks. 3 volumes. xvii, (1) , 537; (6) , (2) , 414, (4) , 14, xi, (2) ; xliii, 705 pp. Vol. I illustrated with 90 lithograph plates, most color, including 3 "facsimiles" of Japanese woodblock prints, 2 folding; 6 maps and charts, 2 folding; numerous woodcuts in the text. Vol. II with 4 color lithographs of Chinese scenes; 2 uncolored natural history engraved plates; 6 hand-colored lithographs of birds; 10 hand-colored steel-engravings of fish; 5 lithographs of shells, 2 hand-colored; 16 diagram plates of winds and currents; 14-page facsimile of Japanese language version of the U.S.-Japan treaty; 17 folding charts on 16 sheets; numerous woodcuts in the text. Vol. III with woodcut star charts throughout. (4to) 29.5x22 cm (111/2x83/4"), later brown half calf and marbled boards, spines lettered in gilt. First Edition, House Issue. Detailed and profusely illustrated account of Perry's expedition to open Japan to the West; "In January 1852 (Perry) was selected to undertake the most important diplomatic mission ever entrusted to an American naval officer, the negotiation of a treaty with Japan, a country at this time sealed against intercourse with the Occidental powers" (DAB). By March 31, 1854, the treaty granting the U.S. trading rights had been signed by the Japanese. Upon his return to the U.S., his chief duty for the following year was to compile his reports of the expedition, aided by Francis Hawks. The first volume has the account of the voyage and lithographs of the travel; the second volume has the natural history reports by D.S. Green and others and includes hand-colored plates of Japanese fishes and shells. In addition to the artist W. Heine, from whose drawings a great number of the lithographs were made, the daguerreotypist E. Brown, Jr., went on the expedition, taking what were undoubtedly the earliest photographic images of Japan, many of them reproduced lithographically in this work. This copy with the nude bathing plate, which was not included on the list of plates and not issued in all copies. Hill 1332; Sabin 30968. Condition: A bit rubbed; some foxing and offsetting; very good. PBA Galleries' Rare Books & Manuscripts Sunday, 1st November 2015 Estimate: $2000-$3000
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