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Description:Original 4 volume 1778 1st French duodecimo edition of William Robertson notable publication the History of America- containing the discovery of America and the conquest of Mexico and Peru.The 4 volumes are complete with 4 large folding copper-plate engraved maps by Robert Benard depicting the Gulf of Mexico (33 x 49 cm), South America (46 x 33 cm), Mexico (30 x 39 cm), and the northwestern part of South America (39 x 25 cm) and 1 folding engraved plate illustrating the chronology of Mexicans (27 x 24.5 cm).Half title for volume I only, small water stain towards end of volume III text, a few small damp stains and spots, small ink stamp at foot of volume I title, contemporary ink note at head of half title. Contemporary half calf gilt, spines a little rubbed and faded but else fine.
General Definitions:Paper thickness and quality: - Heavy and stablePaper color : - off whiteAge of map color: -Colors used: -General color appearance: -Paper size: - 12moPlate size: - 12moMargins: - 12mo
Imperfections:Margins: - Light rubbing to spinePlate area: - Light rubbing to boardsVerso: - Light rubbing to boards
Background:Translation of the immensely popular anthropological account of American history that focuses on the explorations, the conquest of Mexico and Peru, and the anthropology of the indigenous American cultures. In these volumes Robertson wrote the first history of the discovery and Spanish conquest of America based on ample bibliographical information and documents in the Simancas archives. The bibliography [a catalogue of Spanish books and manuscripts] at the end of the last volume is remarkable for the time (Borba de Moraes). The work was first published in 1777, and reprinted many times and translated into several languages.
Robertson , William 1721 - 1793Rev Robertson was a Scottish historian, minister in the Church of Scotland, and Principal of the University of Edinburgh. The thirty years during which he presided over the University perhaps represent the highest point in its history. He made significant contributions to the writing of Scottish history and the history of Spain and Spanish America.Robertson was born at the manse of Borthwick, Midlothian, the son of Robertson the local minister.He was educated at Borthwick Parish School and Dalkeith Grammar School. He was the son of William Robertson and his wife Eleanor Pitcairn. He married his cousin Mary Nesbit in 1751. The family moved to Edinburgh when his father became appointed minister of Old Greyfriars Kirk.He studied divinity at Edinburgh University (1733–41), and was licensed to preach in 1741. He was granted a Doctor of Divinity in 1759. He became minister at Gladsmuir (East Lothian) in 1743 and in 1759 at Lady Yester\\\'s Kirk and Greyfriars Kirk in Edinburgh. A staunch Presbyterian and Whig, he volunteered to defend the city against the Jacobites led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart in 1745.In 1754 he was an original member of The Select Society, also referred to as the Edinburgh Select Society.Robertson became royal chaplain to George III (1761), principal of the University of Edinburgh (1762), Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1763, and Historiographer Royal in 1764, reviving a role within the Royal household in Scotland that had been in abeyance from 1709 until 1763. He was also a member of The Poker Club.One of his most notable works is his History of Scotland 1542–1603, begun in 1753 and first published in 1759. Robertson also contributed to the history of Spain and Spanish America in his History of America (1777), the first sustained attempt to describe the discovery, conquest and settlement of Spanish America since Herreras Décadas and his biography of Charles V. In that work he had provided a masterly survey of the progress of European society, in which he traced the erosion of the feudal system caused by the rise of free towns, the revival of learning and Roman law, and by the emergence of royal authority and the balance of power between states. It was the development of commerce, assisted by law and private property, which was held to be chiefly responsible for the advance in civilisation.He was a significant figure in the Scottish Enlightenment and also of the moderates in the Church of Scotland.In 1783 he was a founding member of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.He died of jaundice on 11 June 1793, at Grange House in south Edinburgh (the huge now-demolished mansion which gave its name to the Grange district. Robertson is buried at Greyfriars Kirkyard, Edinburgh. The grave is within a very large stone mausoleum. second only to William Adam\\\'s mausoleum immediately to the south. Both stand to the south-west of the church, near the entrance to the Covenanters Prison.Publications- The Situation of the World at the Time of Christ\\\'s Appearance (sermon) (1755)The History of Scotland 1542-1603 (1759) (3 vols.)- History of the Reign of the Emperor Charles V (1769) (4 vols.)- The History of America (1777, 1796) (3 vols.)- An Historical Disquisition Concerning the Knowledge Which the Ancients Had of India (1791)