1806 John Barrow Antique Atlas Travel Book to Vietnam via Brazil & South Africa

Cartographer :Sir John Barrow

  • Title : A Voyage to Cochinchina, in the years 1792 and 1793. to which is annexed an account of a journey, made in the years 1801 and 1802, to the residence of the chief of the Booshuana Nation, being the remotest point in the interior of Southern Africa
  • Size: 4to (10 1/2in x 8 1/4in)
  • Condition: (A) Very Good Condition
  • Date : 1806
  • Ref #:  61010

This rare publication of the first English edition of Sir Johns Barrows voyages to Cochin-China, (Vietnam) via Rio de Janeiro, the South African Cape & Batavia, Java in 1792 & 93, was published by Strahan and Preston for T. Cadell and T. Davies, London in 1806. 447 pages with 19 hand coloured plates & 2 hand coloured maps, as called for.

The book has been beautifully rebound in half calf with gilt text to spine & new end papers. Library stamps to the back of each plate & pages TP, 1, 101, 401 & 447. Staining to title page to page 23 & light browning to several pages after, repair to page 311 with browning.
Plates & maps in VG condition in fresh condition and beautiful hand colouring. 447 pages containing 19 hand colored prints, including one folding view of Rio, by T. Medland after Samuel Daniell and W. Alexander, and two folding hand coloured maps, the first a plan of the harbor and town of Rio de Janeiro, the second a Chart of the Cape & Southern Africa.

General Definitions:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color : - off white
Age of map color: - Original
Colors used: - Yellow, green, blue, pink
General color appearance: - Authentic
Paper size: - 11in x 7 1/2in (280mm x 190mm) Plates
Plate size: - 14in x 11in (355mm x 280mm) Fold out plates
Margins: - Min 1/2in (12mm)

Margins: - Age toning
Plate area: - Age toning, repair to page 311
Verso: - Age toning

A Voyage to Cochinchina, in the years 1792 and 1793 first edition of the first illustrated English work on Vietnam. A description of the outward voyage of Lord Macartneys embassy to China. The voyage visited Madeira, the Canary Islands, and Rio de Janeiro; a description of that city and of Brazil in general is given. Touching at Tristan da Cunha, the ship rounded the Cape and eventually reached Cochin China via the city of Batavia on Java. The volume is also of Cook interest, as it describes finding Captain Cooks Resolution transformed into a smuggling whaler under the French flag. The substance of the sketch of Cochinchina is taken from a manuscript memoir drawn up by Captain Barissy, a French naval officer who, having several years commanded a frigate in the service of the King of Cochinchina and being an able and intelligent man, had the means and the opportunity of collecting accurate information .
The African part of the volume - which might perhaps, with more propriety, have formed an appendix to Barrows South African travels - relates to his two missions into the interior in order to reconcile the Kaffirs and Boers and to obtain more accurate topographical knowledge of the colony. He visited most parts of the Cape Colony, including the countries of the Kaffirs, Hottentots and Bushmen. He conducted the first census of Cape Colony, undertook a few amateur geological surveys, and contrived an interview with Shaka, king of the Zulus (Howgego). The son of a Lancashire journeyman tanner, Barrow was initially educated in the local grammar school, subsequently working as as a clerk in a Liverpool iron foundry, as a landsman on a Greenland whaler, and as a mathematics teacher in a Greenwich academy preparing young men for a naval career (ODNB). At this time he gave private tuition to Thomas Staunton, son of Sir George Staunton, to whom, as he later admitted, he was indebted for all the good fortune of his life, which began with his service as comptroller of household to Lord Macartneys embassy. Today, Barrow is perhaps best known for his Mutiny on the Bounty (1831) but, during his lifetime, his accounts of his travels in eastern Asia and southern Africa, published between 1801 and 1807, were better known and more influential. These established new standards for travel writing His interests ranged widely, but the great bulk of his output had a geographical focus, usually with an underlying imperial theme and a belief in progress and the superiority of British civilization Collectively, these activities established his pre-eminence within British geography. The account is superbly illustrated with aquatints of views, types, and natural history specimens, Abbey commending the aquatinting as of excellent quality. Bookplate of Charles Constant de Rebecque to the front pastedown, together with a modern collectors plate. A Swiss, a cousin of Benjamin Consant, Constant de Rebecque acted as an agent for the HEIC, making three trips to China for them, and publishing an account of his travels, Récits de Trois Voyages à la Chine.

Cochinchina is a historical exonym for part or the whole of Vietnam, depending on the contexts, but it was commonly used to refer to the region south of the Gianh River. In the 17th and 18th centuries, Vietnam was divided between the Trịnh lords to the north and the Nguyễn lords to the south. The two domains bordered each other on the Son–Gianh River. The northern section was called Tonkin by Europeans, and the southern part, Đàng Trong, was called Cochinchina by most Europeans and Quinam by the Dutch

Barrow, Sir John 1764 - 1848
Barrow, 1st Baronet, was an English civil servant, geographer, linguist and writer. Barrows legacy has been met with mixed analysis. Some historians regard Barrow as an instrument of imperialism who portrayed Africa as a resource rich land devoid of any human or civilized elements. Nonetheless, other historians consider Barrow to have promoted humanitarianism and rights for South Africans.
Barrow was born the only child of Roger Barrow, a tanner in the village of Dragley Beck, in the parish of Ulverston, Lancashire. He was schooled at Town Bank grammar school, Ulverston, but left at age 13 to found a Sunday school for the poor.
Barrow was employed as superintending clerk of an iron foundry at Liverpool. At only 16, he went on a whaling expedition to Greenland. By his twenties, he was teaching mathematics, in which he had always excelled, at a private school in Greenwich.
Barrow taught mathematics to the son of Sir George Leonard Staunton; through Stauntons interest, he was attached on the first British embassy to China from 1792 to 1794 as comptroller of the household to Lord Macartney. He soon acquired a good knowledge of the Chinese language, on which he subsequently contributed articles to the Quarterly Review; and the account of the embassy published by Sir George Staunton records many of Barrows valuable contributions to literature and science connected with China.
Barrow ceased to be officially connected with Chinese affairs after the return of the embassy in 1794, but he always took much interest in them, and on critical occasions was frequently consulted by the British government.
Some historians attribute the stagnation thesis to Barrow; that China was an extremely civilized nation that was in a process of decay by the time of European contact.
In 1797, Barrow accompanied Lord Macartney as private secretary in his important and delicate mission to settle the government of the newly acquired colony of the Cape of Good Hope. Barrow was entrusted with the task of reconciling the Boer settlers and the native Black population and of reporting on the country in the interior. In the course of the trip, he visited all parts of the colony; when he returned, he was appointed auditor-general of public accounts. He then decided to settle in South Africa, married, and bought a house in 1800 in Cape Town. However, the surrender of the colony at the peace of Amiens (1802) upset this plan.
During his travels through South Africa, Barrow compiled copious notes and sketches of the countryside that he was traversing. The outcome of his journeys was a map which, despite its numerous errors, was the first published modern map of the southern parts of the Cape Colony. Barrows descriptions of South Africa greatly influenced Europeans understanding of South Africa and its peoples. William John Burchell (1781–1863) was particularly scathing: As to the miserable thing called a map, which has been prefixed to Mr. Barrows quarto, I perfectly agree with Professor Lichtenstein, that it is so defective that it can seldom be found of any use.
Barrow returned to Britain in 1804 and was appointed Second Secretary to the Admiralty by Viscount Melville, a post which he held for forty years – apart from a short period in 1806–1807 when there was a Whig government in power. Lord Grey took office as Prime Minister in 1830, and Barrow was especially requested to remain in his post, starting the principle that senior civil servants stay in office on change of government and serve in a non-partisan manner. Indeed, it was during his occupancy of the post that it was renamed Permanent Secretary. Barrow enjoyed the esteem and confidence of all the eleven chief lords who successively presided at the Admiralty board during that period, and more especially of King William IV while lord high admiral, who honoured him with tokens of his personal regard.
In his position at the Admiralty, Barrow was a great promoter of Arctic voyages of discovery, including those of John Ross, William Edward Parry, James Clark Ross and John Franklin. The Barrow Strait in the Canadian Arctic as well as Point Barrow and the city of Barrow in Alaska are named after him. He is reputed to have been the initial proposer of Saint Helena as the new place of exile for Napoleon Bonaparte following the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. Barrow was a fellow of the Royal Society and received the degree of LL.D from the University of Edinburgh in 1821. A baronetcy was conferred on him by Sir Robert Peel in 1835. He was also a member of the Raleigh Club, a forerunner of the Royal Geographical Society.
Barrow retired from public life in 1845 and devoted himself to writing a history of the modern Arctic voyages of discovery (1846), as well as his autobiography, published in 1847. He died suddenly on 23 November 1848. The Sir John Barrow monument was built in his honour on Hoad Hill overlooking his home town of Ulverston, though locally it is more commonly called Hoad Monument. Mount Barrow and Barrow Island in Australia are believed to have been named for him.

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