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Imaginary Dutch travels in Australia

[VAIRASSE D'ALAIS, Denis].
Histoire des Sevarambes, peuples qui habitent une partie du troisiéme continent, communément appellé la Terre Australe.
Amsterdam, Etienne Roger, 1702. 2 volumes bound as 1. 12mo. With engraved frontispiece (repeated in volume 2) and 2 title-pages printed in red and black. Contemporary mottled, tanned sheepskin; rebacked, with the original backstrip laid down, with a new red title-label.
€ 3,500
"Best" (Howgego) edition of an account of an imaginary voyage based on the story of the VOC ship Vergulde Draeck that wrecked on the coast of western Australia on 28 April 1656, first published, simultaneously in French and English, in five parts over the years 1675 to 1679. It was anonymously published by the French writer Denis Vairasse (ca. 1635-1700). Europeans still knew almost nothing about Australia when Vairasse first published his account and his wild stories caught the imagination of the public and went through many editions.
"In Vairasse's story, one of the boats sent out to seek help, returns with news of the discovery of a civilized country where its crew were imprisoned and then released by an armed force from Sporunde, a vassal state of the great kingdom called Sevarambia in the interior. The Sporundeans, who speak Dutch and Spanish as a result of prior European encounter, take the crew to their city where they are welcomed in friendship. On the return of the boat, the survivors of the Dragon d'Or are then taken to Sporunde, from where [Captain] Siden and his companions proceed on a journey to Severambia" (Howgego). "With its emphasis on Deism, Reason, and the full dignity of man, the novel rejects most of what France had stood for from the Huguenot Wars to Louis XIV, and announces instead the dawn of eighteenth-century Enlightenment and nineteenth-century Liberalism" (Friederich).
Some pages a bit browned and rebacked; generally in good condition.
R. Davidson, A book collector's notes, p. 43; Howgego, Invented narratives, V1; STCN (3 copies, incl. 1 incomplete); cf. Friederich, pp. 20-22.
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Australia, new zealand & pacific  >  Australia & New Zealand
Cartography & exploration  >  Australia, New Zealand & Pacific | Imaginary Voyages & Utopias
Literature & linguistics  >  Imaginary Voyages & Utopias