Paris: Theodore Le Gras, 1729. First edition. Hardcover. 12mo (6 3/4 x 4"). , 349, pp. Original full calf, with gold lettering and tooling to spine. Decorative head-, tailpiece and initial. Folded frontispiece map.
First edition of an imaginary voyage to the Orient, purporting to be a translation from the Danish.
Long recognized as one of the earliest imitations of Swift, most critics have also recognized this as one of the better attempts in the genre.
Glantzby, the narrator, embarks at the Cape of Good Hope on a 'friendly nation' ship to explore 'a new continent beyond Japan.' After suffering several Japanese attacks off Japan, the officers and sailors of the ship have decided to become pirates and to sail the 'seas of America.' Glantzby disagreeing, he is disembarked on a deserted island.
Some time later, three men arrive, who offer to take him to the lands of the Empire of Norre. In the village where he lives, Glantzby witnesses a human sacrifice: a man is fed to a giant snake. He kills the snake with his rifle, and frees the man. From then on, the narrator is respected as a living god. The villagers have a peculiarity: they are mute.
This rare first edition is complete with its engraved folded frontispiece map of the imaginary empire of Norre and kingdom of Arrimond.
Minor rubbing. Ex-library copy with bookplate on inside of front cover and stamps on title page. Offsetting to endpapers. Text in French. Binding in overall good, interior in very good condition. g to vg. Item #42912