Amsterdam: Cornille Nicolas, 1609-1610. Three volumes bound in one. Described in greater detail below. Folio. Contemporary vellum over boards; rebacked, preserving original spine. Bookplate on front pastedown. Light soiling and repairs to titlepages. Minor soiling else. Very good. Item #WRCAM51636
Three highly important Dutch voyages, all in their second French editions and bound together as issued in 1610. These three voyages represent the initial Dutch exploration and expansion to the East Indies, a significant element in a global commercial enterprise which was to develop throughout the 17th century. The foundational accounts in the present volume, originally issued together by Amsterdam printer Cornille Nicolas, include: 1) [Lodewijcksz, Willem]: PREMIER LIVRE DE L'HISTOIRE DE LA NAVIGATION AUX INDES ORIENTALES, PAR LES HOLLANDOIS.... Amsterdam: Cornille Nicolas, 1609. 53 leaves. Titlepage with engraved map, forty-five in-text engravings (including three maps), seventeen in-text woodcut illustrations, and one plate on separate leaf following printed text. Moderate soiling on titlepage, slight edge wear to first few leaves. Second French edition, following the first French edition of 1598. Lodewijcksz gives an account of the first Dutch expedition to the East Indies under Cornelis Houtman, from 1595 to 1597. The information collected by Houtman on the spice trade convinced the Dutch they could compete with Portugal's monopoly in the East Indies, and his narrative served to initiate the explosion of Dutch trading at the turn of the century. "Like the English, Houtman's men suffered so severely from scurvy that they had to put in at the Cape of Good Hope and at Antongil Bay in Madagascar to recuperate. But they then sailed straight across the Indian Ocean to the Straits of Sunda and dropped anchor at Bantam in Java without the loss of a ship. At this port, the center of the Javanese pepper trade, a long time was spent. Both natives and Portuguese showed considerable hostility, and Houtman and some of his men were imprisoned. However, the Dutch succeeded in making a commercial treaty and departed with a good cargo. They proceeded eastward to Bali, and then returned along the south coast of Java, thereby acquiring a more correct impression of the width of the island than had prevailed and laid the ghost of Java's being the northern part of the Southern Continent...the Dutch skipper had enough to show for his venture to inspire the merchants of Amsterdam with a determination to exploit the trade" - Penrose. 2) Neck, Jacob Cornelissoon van: LE SECOND LIVRE, IOURNAL OU COMPTOIR, CONTENANT LE VRAY DISCOURS ET NARRATION HISTORIQUE.... Amsterdam: Cornille Nicolas, 1609. Two parts. 22, leaves. Titlepages with engraved illustrations, twenty-two in-text engravings (including one map), two in-text woodcuts. Leaves D2 and D3 lacking, provided in facsimile. Second French edition, following the first French edition of 1601. Van Neck, who represented the Verre Company, commanded three ships which were part of the first successful Dutch trading voyage to the region. The other two ships were commanded by Wybrand Van Warwijck and Jacob Van Heemskerk. Van Neck's vessel became separated from the other two after rounding the Cape of Good Hope, and the three did not reunite again until his arrival in Java in late December 1598. Unlike his Dutch predecessor, Cornelis Houtman, who three years earlier had seized the port of Bantam, Van Neck dealt diplomatically with the natives. "Rather than rejecting the inflated prices asked by the local ruler, he offered to pay over the odds in order to cement a lasting relationship...Van Neck's was the most profitable of the pre-VOC [Dutch East India Company] voyages. Despite the apparently high price paid for spices, he netted a profit of 300 per cent on his overall costs. In 1601, fourteen fleets comprising sixty-five ships sailed for the East Indies, but by that time competition between rival Dutch operators, as well as with the Portuguese, had inflated prices and none were as successful as Van Neck's first enterprise" - Howgego. While focused on activity in the East Indies, EUROPEAN AMERICANA notes the text includes references to Brazil and tobacco from the West Indies. The second part of this 1609 French edition, an eight- page appendix of words spoken in Java and Malay, includes word lists in French (printed in roman type), Malay (in italic type), and Javanese (in civilité). 3) Noort, Olivier van: DESCRIPTION DU PENIBLE VOYAGE FAIT ENTOUR DE L'UNIVERS OV GLOBE TERRESTRE. PAR SR. OLIVIER DU NORT D'UTRECHT, GENERAL DE QUATRE NAVIRES, ASSAVOIR.... Amsterdam: Widow of Cornille Nicolas, 1610. ,61,pp. Engraved titlepage vignette. Twenty-five in- text engravings (including three maps). Second French edition, following the first French printing of 1602. Van Noort, a former innkeeper in Rotterdam sponsored by a group of Dutch merchants, accomplished the fourth circumnavigation of the globe after Magellan, Drake, and Cavendish. He was the first Dutch explorer to do so, making the trip from 1598 to 1601. The voyage was particularly arduous. Half the crew mutinied, his ships were constantly harassed, and most of those that didn't mutiny perished from disease. He returned to Holland "with only one battered ship and eight crew left (although some accounts suggest that forty-five crew survived). His voyage contributed little to the geographical knowledge of the time but had some effect in opening the way to the establishment of the Dutch in the East Indies...Van Noort's achievement, however, captured the imagination of his countrymen, and the published accounts sold well, the first appearing only eighteen days after his return. A more complete edition appeared later that year, followed by two amended editions in 1602" (Howgego). Three of the most important of the pioneering French voyages to the Far East, bound together as issued. Lodewijcksz: EUROPEAN AMERICANA 609/71. TIELE-MULLER 115. JCB (3)II:63. HOWGEGO H105 (Houtman). Penrose, TRAVEL AND DISCOVERY IN THE RENAISSANCE (1952), p.204. Neck: EUROPEAN AMERICANA 609/93. TIELE 786. TIELE-MULLER 129. HOWGEGO N13. Noort: EUROPEAN AMERICANA 610/79. SABIN 55438. BORBA DE MORAES, p.617. W. Klooster, THE DUTCH IN THE AMERICAS 1600-1800, p.12. TIELE 806. JCB (3)II:71. HOWGEGO N37.