Diario del teniente de navio... trabajado en el viage de las corbetas de S.M.C. "Descubierta" y "Atrevida", en los años de 1789 a 1794..
[MALASPINA] VIANA, Francisco Xavier de
Price: 11,500.00 AUD
Montevideo: Imprenta del Ejercito, 1849. Octavo, bound without one of the two issued title-pages sometimes found, and also missing the two final leavesof navigational data (supplied in facsimile); contemporary plain vellum binding, later red leather label; cased. First edition of one of the rarer pieces of Pacific exploration: the first printing of any account of Malaspina's world voyage to the Northwest coast in 1791 and to Australia and the Pacific, including the crucial Port Jackson visit of 1793. It is also "the only full and detailed printed account of Malaspina's voyage from California to Alaska by one of the participants" (Lada-Mocarski). Malaspina's voyage was the major Spanish circumnavigation of the eighteenth century. An official publication was intended, and the artists and scientists of the expedition worked towards its production, but Malaspina became a victim of Spanish court intrigues and ended up in prison; his narrative of the voyage was suppressed (eventually being published in Madrid in 1885) and the full official account was completely abandoned. Not until 1849 was any account of the voyage published, when this narrative by an ensign on the voyage, Francisco Viana, who settled in Uruguay towards the beginning of the nineteenth century, was published by his sons in Montevideo. The book is also of considerable interest as a South American printing, and its rarity may perhaps be explained by the circumstances of its publication: it was printed on the travelling press of the army besieging Montevideo during hostilities between Uruguay and Argentina. It was not republished in any form until 1967 when the Australian Documentary Facsimile Society reprinted the Port Jackson section as The Spanish at Port Jackson, with a preface and translation by A. Grove and Virginia M. Day. Its importance to Australian history is considerable: the visit to Port Jackson took place barely five years after the first settlement - indeed it is described at some length in Collins' Account of the English Colony - and the visitors were welcomed by Grose (in the governor's absence) and entertained by Collins, White, Prentice and Johnston. Ferguson's entry for the book is confused (he describes it under two separate numbers, 5100 and 5228). He records a copy at the National Library of Australia and another at the Mitchell Library in Sydney; in fact the Mitchell copy, as Grove Day pointed out, lacked the crucial Port Jackson section itself, but the Library has acquired a perfect copy in recent years. Grove Day also records copies of the book at the Museo Naval in Madrid and in the Library of Congress, but notes that it is not held by the British Library. No copy is recorded in the catalogue of the Hill Collection. ... The expedition was particularly important in the history of the exploration of the Northwest coast; an extensive summary by David Igler of the 1791 exploration is available online (www.common-place.org/vol-05/no-02/igler/). Other good notices include: Thomas Vaughan, Voyages of Enlightenment: Malaspina on the Northwest Coast 1791/1792 (Portland, 1977), Iris H. Wilson Engstrand, "Of Fish and Men: Spanish Marine Science During the Late Eighteenth Century," Pacific Historical Review 69 (February 2000): 3-30; Engstrand, "The Eighteenth Century Enlightenment Comes to Spanish California," Southern California Quarterly 80 (Spring 1998): 3-30; David J. Weber, "The Spanish Moment in the Pacific Northwest," in Paul W. Hirt, ed., Terra Pacifica: People and Place in the Northwest States and Western Canada (Pullman, Wash., 1998); Donald C. Cutter, Malaspina and Galiano: Spanish Voyages to the Northwest Coast, 1791 & 1792 (Vancouver, 1991); and John Kendrick, Alejandro Malaspina, Portrait of a Visionary (Montreal, 1999). Provenance: Jorge Skinner-Klée (Guatemalan lawyer and diplomat); private collection (Sydney). A little browning in the text, margins cut close by the binder frequently touching or deleting page numerals, and touching the typographic borders surrounding text.