A Journey into Siberia
Containing an Account of the Manners and Customs of the Russians, the Present State of Their Empire; with the Natural History, and Geographical Descriptions of Their Country
Chappe D’Auteroche, Jean Baptiste
London: T. Jeffreys, 1770. First Edition. Quarto. 4to â€“ 27.2cm. [xiii], (6) Contents, (1) Publisherâ€™s Advertisements, 355pp., (1) Errata. With partly hand-colored fold-out map front-piece measuring 26.5 x 51.5 cm, and 9 etched plates including 1 fold-out and 8 full-page. Modern 3/4-brown calf with marbled boards with new end leaves, spine with five raised bands with gilt title and gilt decorative motif in compartments; all page edges marbled. Contents very clean with only slight intermittent beginning foxing; The paper used for this production has pleasing tactile and acoustical qualities. Prior ownerâ€™s attractive script signature in sepia at top of title page. A clean and complete copy of a rare publication in excellent condition.
Cat. Russica C495; ESTC T70180; Howgego, to 1800, C101; not in Chavanne.
Jean Chappe d’Auteroche was a French astronomer who was sent to Siberia for the purpose of observing the transit of Venus. The Transit was due in June 1761 and was considered to have great scientific importance since theoretically it could be used to estimate the size of the solar system. From St Petersburg Chappe d’Auteroche sledged to Tobolosk, where he spent several months, observing the Transit of Venus and carrying out a large number of related scientific measurements. After his return, he published his Voyage en Siberie (1768). Chappe D’Auteroche describes Siberia’s geography, natural history, and the culture of its inhabitants â€“ their manners and customs; He also sharply condemns Russia’s political regime. The plates show native inhabitants in their respective dress along with a view with Russian sledges with provisions in a village context.