Voyage dans les parties sud de l'Amérique septentrionale; : savoir: les Carolines septentrionale et méridionale, la Georgie, les Florides orientale et occidentale, le pays de Cherokées, le vaste territoire des Muscogulges ou de la confédération Creek, et
Year: VII (1799)
Publisher: Chez Carteret et Brosson and Dogour Duran
First French edition of Bartram's Travels, which chronicled his explorations of the southern British colonies in North America from 1773–1777
2 volumes. 457 pages with frontispiece engraved portrait by Bovinet Mico Chlucco Grana, King of the Seminoles and one folding plate; 436 pages without title with large folding map by J.B. Poirson engraved by Alexandre Blondeau and folding plate. Octavo (8 1/4" x 5 1/4") bound in half leather with six spine compartments with red and black labels in gilt over original marbled boards. Translated by Pierre Vincent Benoist. (Sabin 3871; Palau 251346; Howes B223; Field 94) First French edition.
William Bartram was an American naturalist. The son of the naturalist John Bartram. As a boy, he accompanied his father on many of his travels to the Catskill Mountains, the New Jersey Pine Barrens, New England, and Florida. In 1773, he embarked upon a four-year journey through eight southern colonies. Bartram made many drawings and took notes on the native flora and fauna, and the native American Indians. In 1774, he explored the St. Johns River, where he had memorable encounters with aggressive alligators, and also visited a principal Seminole village at Cuscowilla, where his arrival was celebrated with a great feast. He met Ahaya the Cowkeeper, chief of the Alachua band of the Seminole tribe. When Bartram explained to the Cowkeeper that he was interested in studying the local plants and animals, the chief was amused and began calling him Puc Puggy (the flower hunter). Bartram continued his explorations of the Alachua Savannah, or what is today Paynes Prairie. William Bartram wrote of his experiences exploring the Southeast in his book Travels through North & South Carolina, East & West Florida, the Cherokee Country, the Extensive Territories of the Muscogulges, or Creek Confederacy, and the Country of the Chactaws, Containing an Account of the Soil and Natural Productions of Those Regions, Together with Observations on the Manners of the Indians, published in 1791 and which is today simply known as Bartram's Travels. It was considered at the time one of the foremost books on American natural history. Many of Bartram's accounts of historical sites were the earliest records, including the Georgia mound site of Ocmulgee. In addition to its contributions to scientific knowledge, Travels is noted for its original descriptions of the American countryside. Bartram's writing influenced many of the Romantic writers of the day. William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and François René de Chateaubriand are known to have read the book, and its influence can be seen in many of their works. Ephraim George Squier and Edwin Hamilton Davis, in their book, Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley, name Bartram as "the first naturalist who penetrated the dense tropical forests of Florida."
Some rubbing to original boards, page 143 of volume one has small burn mark affecting text, half title bound upside down in back, old water stain to plate of volume two. Fold-out map has repair to first fold, internally pages are clean and free of toning and foxing else a very good copy.
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