1774 Cook & Hawkesworth Antique Atlas of Australia, New Zealand 52 Maps & Prints

Publisher : Captain James Cook

  • Title : Cartes et figures des voyages entrepris par ordre de sa Majesté Britannique, actuellement régnante ; pour faire des découvertes dans l'hémisphère méridional, et successivement exécutés par le Commodore Byron, le Capitaine Carteret, le Capitaine Wallis & le Capitaine Cook dans les vaisseaux. MDCCLXXIV (1774)
  • Size: 4to (Quatro)
  • Condition: (A) Very Good Condition
  • Date : 1774
  • Ref #:  35632

This original antique Atlas containing 52 maps and prints, as called for, from some of the foremost explorers of the mid 18th century, including Commodore Byron, Captain Carteret, Captain Wallis & Captain James Cook, was published as the 1st French edition of Cartes et figures des voyages entrepris par ordre de sa Majesté Britannique: (Maps and Figures of Travels undertaken by Order of his Present Reigning British Majesty) in 1774, published after only a year after the 1st English edition by John Hawkesworth.

The 52 prints and maps contained in this atlas chart in maps, prints and plans, the progression in the exploration of the South Seas of the 4 explorers. But there is of course, the standout amongst these 4 explorers and that is of course Captain James Cook.
At the time of the publication of this tome, Cook had returned from his first voyage of exploration to The South Pacific, becoming the first European to survey and chart the coastline of New Zealand and the east coast of Australia. But at this point Cook was not as famous as he was destined to become, after completing 2 more voyages of exploration, and in turn becoming the most famous explorer of his era.
The majority of this atlas contains the prints and maps dedicated to Cooks 1st Voyage of Discovery including the two famous maps, one of New Zealand and the other the East Coast of Australia. All voyages can be tracked from the first large folding map of the South Seas, at the beginning of the Atlas, that illustrates the tracks on Cook and the other 3 explorers.

In-4 binding in half-calf, spine with five bands with gilding boxes and title label complete with 52 folding & single plates
Spine & boards in poor condition with lack of leather and scratched covers, contents tights with plates in very good condition.

General Definitions:
Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stable
Paper color : - off white
Age of map color: -
Colors used: -
General color appearance: -
Paper size: - 4to (Quatro)
Plate size: - 4to (Quatro)
Margins: - 4to (Quatro)

Margins: - Light age toning - Maps & Prints
Plate area: - Folds as issued - Maps & Prints
Verso: - Folds as issued - Maps & Prints

Capt. Cook First Voyage 1768 - 1771:
In 1768 Cook was chosen to lead an expedition to the South Seas to observe the Transit of Venus and to secretly search for the unknown Great Southern Continent (terra australis incognita).
Cook and his crew of nearly 100 men left Plymouth (August 1768) in the Endeavour and travelled via Madeira (September), Rio de Janiero (November-December) and Tierra del Fuego (January 1769) to Tahiti.
At Tierra del Fuego (January 1769) Cooks men went ashore and met the local people whom Cook thought perhaps as miserable a set of People as are this day upon Earth. Joseph Bankss party collected botanical specimens but his two servants, Thomas Richmond and George Dorlton, died of exposure in the snow and cold. Leaving Tierra del Fuego Endeavour rounded Cape Horn and sailed into the Pacific Ocean.
Sir Joseph Banks wrote about the homes of the Fuegans
..…huts or wigwams of the most unartificial construction imaginable, indeed no thing bearing the name of a hut could possibly be built with less trouble. They consisted of a few poles set up and meeting together at the top in a conical figure, these were covered on the weather side with a few boughs and a little grass, on the lee side about one eighth part of the circle was left open and against this opening was a fire made.......(Banks, Journal I, 224, 20th January 1769)
Samuel Wallis on the ship Dolphin discovered Tahiti in 1767. He recommended the island for the Transit of Venus observations and Cook arrived here in April 1769. Cook, like Wallis two years before him, anchored his ship in the shelter of Matavai Bay on the western side of the island.
In Matavai Bay Cook established a fortified base, Fort Venus, from which he was to complete his first task – the observation of the Transit of Venus (3rd June 1769). The fort also served as protection for all the important scientific and other equipment which had to be taken ashore as:
.......great and small chiefs and common men are firmly of opinion that if they can once get possession of an thing it immediately becomes their own…the chiefs employd in stealing what they could in the cabbin while their dependents took every thing that was loose about the ship…...(Joseph Banks).
Theft by some native peoples plagued Cooks voyages.
Cook and his crew experienced good relations with the Tahitians and returned to the islands on many occasions, attracted by the friendly people of this earthly paradise. On arrival Cook had set out the rules, including:
.....To endeavour by every fair means to cultivate a friendship with the Natives and to treat them with all imaginable humanity....
Just as Cook was planning to leave Tahiti two members of Endeavours crew decided to desert, having strongly attached themselves to two girls, but Cook recovered them.
Cook sailed around the neighbouring Society Islands and took on board the Tahitian priest, Tupaia, and his servant, Taiata. Endeavour left the Society Island in August 1769.
Tupaia acted as interpreter when they came into contact with other Polynesian peoples and helped Cook to make a map of the Pacific islands. This showed Cook the location of islands arranged according to their distance from Tahiti and indicated Tupaias and Polynesian knowledge of navigation and their skill as great mariners.
Cook sailed in search of the Southern Continent (August-October 1769) before turning west to New Zealand. The first encounters with the native Maori of New Zealand in October were violent, their warriors performing fierce dances, or hakas, in attempts to threaten and challenge the ships crew. Some of their warriors were killed when Cooks men had to defend themselves. Eventually relations improved and Cook was able to trade with the Maori for fresh supplies.
Exploring different bays and rivers along the way Cook circumnavigated New Zealand and was the first to accurately chart the whole of the coastline. He discovered that New Zealand consisted of two main islands, north (Te Ika a Maui) and south (Te Wai Pounamu) islands (October 1769-March 1770).
The artist Sydney Parkinson described three Maori who visited the Endeavour on 12th October 1769:
......Most of them had their hair tied up on the crown of their heads in a knot…Their faces were tataowed, or marked either all over, or on one side, in a very curious manner, some of them in fine spiral directions…
This Maori wears an ornamental comb, feathers in a top-knot, long pendants from his ears and a heitiki, or good luck amulet, around his neck.
At the northern end of the south island Cook anchored the ship in Ship Cove, Queen Charlotte Sound, which became a favourite stopping place on the following voyages. Parkinson noted:
......The manner in which the natives of this bay (Queen Charlotte Sound) catch their fish is as follows: - They have a cylindrical net, extended by several hoops at the bottom, and contracted at the top; within the net they stick some pieces of fish, then let it down from the side of the canoe and the fish, going in to feed, are caught with great ease.....(Parkinson, Journal, 114)
In Queen Charlottes Sound Cook visited one of the many Maori hippah, or fortified towns.
........The town was situated on a small rock divided from the main by a breach in a rock so small that a man might almost Jump over it; the sides were every where so steep as to render fortifications iven in their way almost totally useless, according there was nothing but a slight Palisade…in one part we observed a kind of wooden cross ornamented with feathers made exactly in the form of a crucifix cross…we were told that it was a monument to a dead man.......
Endeavour left New Zealand and sailed along the east coast of New Holland, or Australia, heading north (April-August 1770). Cook started to chart the east coast and on 29th April landed for the first time in what Cook called Stingray, later, Botany Bay.
The ship struck the Great Barrier Reef and was badly damaged (10 June). Repairs had to be carried out in Endeavour River. (June-August 1770). The first kangaroo to be sighted was recorded and shot.
The inhabitants of New Holland were very different from the people Cook had come across in other Pacific lands. They were darker skinned than the Maori and painted their bodies:
......They were all of them clean limnd, active and nimble. Cloaths they had none, not the least rag, those parts which nature willingly conceals being exposed to view compleatly uncovered......(Joseph Banks)
Tupaia could not make himself understood and at first the aborigines were very wary of the visitors and not at all interested in trading.
Joseph Banks recorded the fishing party observed at Botany Bay on 26 April 1770. He wrote:
......Their canoes… a piece of Bark tied together in Pleats at the ends and kept extended in the middle by small bows of wood was the whole embarkation, which carried one or two…people…paddling with paddles about 18 inches long, one of which they held in either hand.....(Banks, Journal II, 134)
Endeavour left Australia and sailed via the Possession Isle and Endeavour Strait for repairs at Batavia, Java (October-December 1770). Although the crew had been quite healthy and almost free from scurvy, the scourge of sailors, many caught dysentery and typhoid and over thirty died at Batavia or on the return journey home via Cape Town, South Africa (March-April 1771). The ship arrived off Kent, England (July 1771).
The voyage successfully recorded the Transit of Venus and largely discredited the belief in a Southern Continent. Cook charted the islands of New Zealand and the east coast of Australia and the scientists and artists made unique records of the peoples, flora and fauna of the different lands visited.

Vice-Admiral John Byron (1723-1786) was a British naval officer and explorer. He is known for his circumnavigation of the globe aboard the HMS Dolphin, completing one of the first British expeditions to achieve this feat. His account of the voyage, "The Narrative of the Honourable John Byron," influenced subsequent explorations. Byron's naval career included service in the Seven Years' War and the American Revolutionary War.

Rear-Admiral Philip Carteret (1733-1796) was a British naval officer and explorer. He is best known for his role as the captain of HMS Swallow during the first circumnavigation of the globe. Carteret's expedition, which took place from 1766 to 1769, aimed to explore and map uncharted regions of the Pacific Ocean. His discoveries included the Carteret Islands and the Pitcairn Islands. Carteret's voyage greatly contributed to the knowledge of Pacific geography and exploration during that time.

Samuel Wallis (1728-1795) was a British naval officer and explorer. He is renowned for leading the first recorded European expedition to visit Tahiti and for his significant contributions to the exploration of the Pacific Ocean. In 1766, Wallis commanded HMS Dolphin on a voyage funded by the British Admiralty. During the expedition, he discovered and named several islands, including Tahiti, which he encountered in June 1767. Wallis's visit to Tahiti marked the beginning of sustained European contact with the island and its inhabitants. His exploration efforts and subsequent reports greatly expanded European knowledge of the Pacific region. Wallis's achievements laid the foundation for future explorations and influenced subsequent voyages of exploration in the Pacific.

John Hawkesworth 1715 -1775
An English writer and journalist, Hawkesworth was commissioned by the British Admiralty to edit for publication the narratives of its officers circumnavigations. He was given full access to the journals of the commanders and the freedom to adapt and re-tell them in the first person. Cook was already on his way back from his second Pacific voyage, temporarily docked at Cape Town (South Africa), when he first saw the published volumes: he was mortified and furious to find that Hawkesworth claimed in the introduction that Cook had seen and blessed (with slight corrections) the resulting manuscript. (In his defense, Hawkesworth also had been a victim of misunderstanding.) Cook had trouble recognizing himself. Moreover, the work was full of errors and commentary introduced by Hawkesworth and, in Cooks view, too full of Banks, who had promoted himself and the publication. Still, the work was popular; the first edition sold out in several months.

Cook , Capt. James 1728-1779
James Cook was born on 27 October 1728 in Marton, England. His father was a poor farm labourer who had worked his way up to Overseer. James began as a farm labourer and grocer\\\'s assistant. He soon found employment on the Baltic sea in a Collier (coal transport ship) at the age of 18.
During the war with the French in 1755, James Cook enlisted as an Able Seaman on the Eagle. Within a month he was promoted, because of outstanding ability, to Masters Mate. Four years later he was promoted to Master. In command of his own ship, James Cook performed a crucial charting of the St. Lawrence River, which made possible the great amphibious assault upon Quebec City in 1759. In 1763 he was given command of the schooner Grenville to survey the eastern coasts of Canada over a four year period. These excellent charts were used up until the early part of the 20th century.
James Cook was selected to lead a 1768 expedition to observe the transit of Venus, and to explore new lands in the Pacific Ocean. In his first Pacific voyage, James Cook rounded Cape Horn in the Endeavour and reached Tahiti on 3 June 1769. After recovering a necessary scientific instrument stolen by the natives, the transit of Venus was successfully observed. The Endeavour then spent six months charting New Zealand. James Cook next explored and claimed possession of eastern Australia. Returning to England, on 12 June 1771, via New Guinea, Java and the Cape of Good Hope, the crew suffered an appalling 43% fatality rate. James Cook thus became very concerned about crew health on subsequent voyages. He instituted compulsory dietary reforms that were copied by many other ship captains.
The object of Captain Cook\\\'s second Pacific Ocean voyage was to confirm the existence of a theorized Great Southern Continent. His ship the Resolution, accompanied by the Adventure, departed Plymouth on 13 July 1772 and sailed around the Cape of Good Hope. Beset by ice, he was unable to reach Antarctica. Although its existence was suspected, James Cook demonstrated, by traversing large areas of the south Pacific, that it would have to be a frigid wasteland, and not an economically productive addition to the British empire. James Cook charted many of the South Pacific islands with the incredible accuracy of 3 miles. This accuracy was made possible by a new and highly accurate clock. The two ships returned to England, via Cape Horn, on 29 July 1775. The experimental diets and close attention to cleanliness had a miraculous effect: out of a crew of 118, only one man was lost to disease! Since public interest was high, the many paintings by the artists were widely displayed and published as engravings. James Cook was also awarded the Copley Gold Medal and elected as a fellow of the Royal Society.
The third great voyage is especially significant to the history of the west coast of North America. Captain Cook and his men were primarily searching for the Northwest Passage from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean. They departed Plymouth on 12 July 1776 in the Resolution and the Discovery.
The ships sailed around the Cape of Good Hope to reach the west coast of America in February of 1778. They continued north along the coast in haste to the Bering Sea and Bering Strait in an attempt to pass through the Arctic Ocean during the summer season. Foiled by ice, James Cook returned to Hawaii to prepare for another attempt at the Northwest Passage the next season. Soon after they had departed, a storm damaged the foremast of the Resolution and forced a return to Kealakekua Bay for repairs. Unfortunately, they had previously overstayed their welcome and relations became tense. The theft of a ship\\\'s cutter led Captain Cook to put ashore to demand the return of the boat. A fight broke out and James Cook was killed on 14 Feb 1779 by angry natives. Although his men made another attempt at the Northwest Passage, they were unsuccessful. The expedition did identify the possibilities of trade with the coastal American natives for otter seal furs, which could then be bartered for Chinese goods that were highly prized in England.