Dublin. 1784. Three volumes. ,xcviii,421; ,549; ,559pp., plus frontispiece portrait, eighteen folding maps and charts, seven folding plates, and folding table. Contemporary calf, spines gilt, leather labels. Extremities lightly worn, slight wear to spine ends and hinges, first volume expertly rebacked, with original spine laid down. Minor occasional foxing. A very good set. Item #WRCAM43625
First Dublin edition of the official account of Cook's third and final voyage, including text on the exploration of Hawaii and the west coasts of America, Canada, and Alaska. The third voyage was undertaken to continue the British survey of the Pacific, but most particularly to search for a northwest passage from the western side. Sailing in 1776, the expedition called at Kerguelen Island, Tasmania, New Zealand, and the Cook, Tonga, and Society islands, then sailed north and discovered Christmas Island and the Hawaiian Islands. They then thoroughly explored and charted the Northwest Coast from the Bering Straits along the coast of Alaska and Canada, as far south as present northern California. Returning to Hawaii in 1778, the expedition was at first received warmly; but after departing and being forced to return to repair a mast, trouble developed which led to a tragic series of events in which the great navigator was killed. However, the expedition pressed on under Clerke and then Gore, and explored the coasts of Siberia and Kamchatka before returning to England in 1780. Forbes calls this work "arguably the single most important book on the Hawaiian islands." The Dublin edition was issued both with and without the plates; this copy is the issue with the plates, which is considerably more desirable and difficult to come by. HOWES C729a. SABIN 16250. BEDDIE 1546. London edition: HILL 361. FORBES 62. LADA-MOCARSKI 37. REESE, BEST OF THE WEST 14 (ref).