OSBORNE, Thomas (publisher).
A Collection of Voyages and Travels, Consisting of Authentic Writers in our own Tongue, which have not before been collected in English, or have only been abridged in other Collections. And continued with Others of Note, that have published Histories, Voyages, Travels, Journals or Discoveries in other Nations and Languages, relating to Any Part of the Continent of Asia, Africa, America, Europe ... Complied from the curious and valuable Library of the late Earl of Oxford ...
London: Thomas Osborne, 1745. 2 volumes, small folio. (14 x 10 inches). 53 engraved maps and plates, letterpress folding table.
Expertly bound to style in half calf and marbled paper covered boards, spine gilt with raised bands in seven compartments, red and black morocco lettering pieces
Provenance: Oliver Baron (armorial bookplate)
First edition of an important collection of voyages, including many relating to the Americas.
These two volumes are known as the Harleian or Oxford voyages, being compiled in some part from the unpublished manuscripts in the collection of the Earl of Oxford. Although separately-published by Thomas Osborne at a later date, they are generally considered the logical supplement to the travel anthology first published in 1704 by John and Awnsham Churchill. Since they publish material not included in the first six volumes of Churchill's anthology (including Galvano, Drake, Le Maire, de Mont and numerous others), they form a natural complement to the earlier collection.
The first volume principally deals with the Near and Middle East, while the second volume covers North America, India, East Asia and the East Indies and Africa. The Chinese content is substantial and includes Baudier's History of the Court of the King of China and Escalante's Account of the Empire of China. Of particular note in the second volume is the chapter devoted to Sir Francis Drake's explorations.
The work is well illustrated with maps and plates, with 30 of the maps by Herman Moll and with 12 relating to the Americas.
Hill 295; Sabin 57765; Alden 745/156.