PRINCIPAL NAVIGATIONS, VOIAGES AND DISCOVERIES OF THE ENGLISH NATION, made by Sea or over Land, to the most remote and farthest distant Quarters of the earth at any time within the compasse of these 1500 yeeres...The first, conteining the personall travels of the English vnto Indea, Syria, Arabia, the river Euphrates, Babylon...the Persian Gulfe...Egypt, the chiefest ports and place of Africa...The second...towards the North and Northeast by Sea, as of Lapland...Nova Zembla...Russia, the Caspian Sea, Georgia, Armenia, Media, Persia...Tartria...The third and last, including the English valiant attempts in serarching almost all the corners of the vaste and new world of Newfoundland, the maine of Virginia, the point of Florida, Baie of Mexico, all the inland of Nova Hispania, the coast of Terra firma, Brasil, the river of Plate, the Streight of Magellan and through it, and from it in the South Sea to...the Gulfe of California...further then euer any Christian hitherto hath pierced.

(London: George Bishop and Ralph Newberie, Deputies to Christopher Barker, 1589).

RARE FIRST EDITION AND HIGHLY IMPORTANT AND VERY SCARCE. A PMM WORK. THIS COPY WITH THE RARE INCLUSION OF DRAKE’S VOYAGE. Hakluyt’s greatest work, here in first edition format. This work has been called “the prose epic of the modern English nation” and is an invaluable treasure of material for the history of geographical exploration and colonization and has secured Hakluyt’s reputation for centuries.
Book 3 is entirely devoted to the Americas, and as such is one of the earliest English books to cover the subject in any depth. Hakluyt was a foremost supporter of English exploration and colonization in the New World. Sabin calls this one of the most desirable books for a collection of Americana.
PRINTING AND THE MIND OF MAN cites Hakluyt’s book as an “enormous work...said to contain one million seven hundred thousand words (as) the most complete collection of voyages and discoveries, by land as well as by sea....Hakluyt... inspired some of the great overseas explorations of his time and was one of the leading spirits in the Elizabethan maritime expansion. He met many of the great navigators---Drake, Raleigh, Gilbert, Frobisher and others---corresponded with Ortelius and Mercator and collected all the material on voyages he could find....He was a consultant to the East India Company and a patentee of the Virginia Company. He instigated numerous publications in the geographical literature of his time and suggested DeBry’s publication of John White’s drawings of America and Hariot’s TRUE REPORT which became Part I of De Bry’s great collection of voyages. His own manuscripts were used by Samuel Purchas for the HAKLUYTUS POSTHUMUS OR PURCHAS his PILGRIMES, the continuation of Hakluyt’s work published in five volumes in 1625.
The historical importance of the work cannot be overstated. In the words of Bancroft, this collection “redounds as much to the glory of the English nation as any book that ever was published” and as Dibdin said, “All hail to thee, Richard Hakluyt”.
‘With the present work Hakluyt meant to stimulate interest in recent explorations and discoveries. A great promotor of English colonization and commerce, his life was devoted to this cause. He methodically tried to achieve his vision of England"s potential which included the revival of England"s national glory through trade, the colonization of North America, and the growth of the British sea power through the education of seamen. Between 1580 and 1625 Hakluyt was directly or indirectly responsible for the translation and publication of 28 works on geography and exploration. He had a widely distributed network of scholars, publishers, and explorers in and out of England, with whom he exchanged information and ideas. Hakluyt worked hard to gather his information from the primary sources, and he usually provided citations of origins, which was a rare feature of contemporary historical research. Although Hakluyt had the opportunity, he did not use his work to make a strong plea to either the people or the crown to fulfill an imperial ambition. Even though a momentum was building up for an East Indian enterprise of large proportions, he did not - at least not openly - encourage this in his work, which he wanted to be an independent historical source for sixteenth-century English interests abroad. The world-map, not found here, was only included very rarely. That map may have been printed after the publication of the books themselves or to special order for later inclusion. It has been suggested that the one which was first intended to be inserted does not appear to have been published. As to the Drake Voyage, Hakluyt seems to have “printed a few copies privately; and the Voyage thus suppressed, is sometimes inserted after p. 643” as here.
The present work (dedicated to Sir Francis Walsingham) includes a number of important voyages to the Americas, among them Verazzano"s to Florida, Ulloa"s and Alarcon"s to California, Tomson"s to New Mexico, Drake"s to the West Indies, the Virginia Settlement Voyages of 1585 and later, as well as voyages to Russia and Africa (including the first voyage to Benin). The account of Drake"s Circumnavigation was first published here, and includes his explorations around the Californian coast. Hakluyt initially suppressed it, privately printing the six-page account and inserting it (without pagination, as here) into some copies of the first edition. "Hakluyt had indeed begun to prepare such an account [of Drake"s Circumnavigation] but withdrew it so as not to prejudice a collection of Drake"s voyages which was in preparation. Permission now came to insert it, not improbably from Drake himself" (Hakluyt Handbook, p. 475). Item #20513

First Edition of the First Hakluyt, a PMM book and “the Prose Epic of the English Nation”. With the rare insertion of six leaves of “Sir Francis Drake’s Voyage” after p. 643. Large engraved and pictiorially decorated initials and elaborately engraved headpieces at the beginning of each book, finely engraved tailpieces to the last leaf of the first book and on the colophon leaf and a profusion of engraved initials throughout. Folio, bound in fine later red morocco, the covers with double gilt fillet lines, the spine with raised bands gilt stopped, separating the compartments, each of which is ruled with double gilt fillet lines. Three compartments with gilt letterwork, inside turnovers with a single gilt fillet line, all edges gilt. (16), 825, (8 Table, lacking one leaf of the table) pp. A pleasing and handsome and well preserved copy of this scarce and important work. Title-page laid down, a copy with provenance.

Price: $35,000.00