OSBECK, Pehr. Reise nach Ostindien und China. Nebst O. Toreens Reise nach Suratte und E. G. Ekebergs Nachricht von der Landwirthschaft der Chineser. Aus dem Schwedischen übersetzt von J. G. Georgi. Rostock, Johann Christian Koppe, 1765.
8vo. Entirely uncut in contemporary speckled paper covered interim boards; pp. , xxiv, , 13 engraved plates; boards a bit worn, ocasional light spotting only, otherwise very good.
First edition in German. A student of Linnaeus, the Swedish cleric Osbeck (1723-1805) was appointed chaplain on the Swedish ship Prins Carl, the first three-decker employed by the Swedes in the East India trade, on its voyage to China in 1750-1752; as Osbeck states in his preface, 'So tedious a voyage required some amusement [...] during all intermissions from our ordinary business. Every one chose something adapted to his taste; for my part I found nothing that could entertain more innocently both myself during the voyage, and my friends after my return, than natural history' (I, pp. xii-xiv). In addition to these observations, Osbeck also recorded other aspects of the countries which he visited, and his Voyage documents the ship's journey via Spain, the Canary Islands, Africa and Java to China, and the return passage via Ascension Island and the Sargasso Sea. The natural history specimens collected by Osbeck included some 600 new species of plants, which were incorporated into Linneaus' Species plantarum (Stockholm: 1753), and include the Osbeckia chinensis, illustrated in the present work as plate 2. Osbeck's account was first published in Swedish as Dagbok öfver en Ostindisk Resa åren 1750. 1751. 1752 ... (Stockholm: 1757) and was then translated into German by Johan Gottlieb Georgi under the direction of Daniel Schreber (himself a student of Linnaeus) and revised and enlarged by the author; this German edition was then used for the English translation by the celebrated botanist and traveller Forster, which came out six years later.
See Cordier 2097; Walravens 193; Pritzel 6865.