Narrative of the Arctic Land Expedition

To The Mouth Of The Great Fish River And Along The Shores Of The Arctic Ocean, In The Years 1833, 1834, and 1835

BACK, George

ONE OF THE FINEST TRAVEL BOOKS OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY

BACK, George Narrative of the Arctic Land Expedition To The Mouth Of The Great Fish River And Along The Shores Of The Arctic Ocean, In The Years 1833, 1834, and 1835

John Murray, 1836.

First edition. Limited edition, being one of 250 copies printed on large paper. 4to. In a fine contemporary binding of half morocco over marbled boards. Top edge gilt, others untrimmed. Frontispiece and fifteen further mounted plates on india paper after sketches by Back. A fine copy, tall and clean with just the occasional spot or two to a couple of mounts.

A fine copy of what Howgego describes as "one of the finest travel books of the nineteenth century" and Hill as "one of the fundamental books on Arctic exploration". Back was a great explorer-artist and the book combines a notable and extensive expedition of arctic regions with finely engraved drawings illustrating its discoveries.
It records what began as a relief expedition for John Ross's 1829 search for the Northwest Passage, and resulted in 7,500 miles of travel, including 1,200 of discovery, finding the Great Fish River, and making important observations of the Aurora Borealis. He returned to England a hero of Arctic exploration, "was awarded the Royal Geographical Society's gold medal, and was promoted by the Admiralty to the rank of captain on 30 September 1835, by order in council—an honour that no other officer in the navy had received except William IV" (ODNB).

PROVENANCE: Walter Reid (original subscriber to the expedition); thence by descent to William Reid MD (his bookplate); Franklin Brooke-Hitching (his sale, 2014).

Howgego II B3.

Stock ID: 39294

£3,750.00

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