DUMONT D'URVILLE, Jules Sebastien Cesar (1790-1842). Voyage au Pole Sud et dans L'Oceanie sure les corvettes L'Astrolabe et la Zelee pendant les annees 1837-1838-1839-1840 sous le commandement de M. Dumont-D'Urville Capitaine de Vaisseau - Anthropologie - Geologie. Paris: Gide et J. Baudry, 1842-1847.
ATLAS VOLUME ONLY. Folio (21 4/8 x 14 inches). Anthropologie - 47 tinted lithographed plates of life-masks, skulls and cranial cross-sections, and 3 engraved plates; Geologie - 2 double-page engraved maps and 2 full-page maps hand-coloured in part and 9 lithographed plates of views and specimens (plates loose, one or two with frayed edges not affecting the images). Contemporary maroon backed, marbled paper boards, gilt (detached).
The important anthropological and geological atlas volume to Dumont D’Urville’s third voyage of exploration to the South Pacific, which left Toulon late in 1837 in the Astrolabe and the Zélée. Their aim was to voyage as far south as possible, surpassing the latitude of Weddell, and so claim the South Magnetic Pole for the French. Then they would pass through the Strait of Magellan, voyage up the coast of Chile and across to Western Australia, on to Hobart, New Zealand, then the East Indies, round the Cape of Good Hope and return in France.
In the event they were delayed and spent too long in the Strait of Magellan before heading south and ended up entangled in ice-bergs struggling towards the South Orkney Islands, followed by the South Shetland Islands and finally Bransfield Strait, before conditions onboard became so bad that he returned north to Talcahuano, in Chile, where they established a temporary hospital for the crew members affected by scurvy. A more gentle exploration of the Pacific led the Astrolabe and Zelee to the Marquesas, the East Indies, and on to Tasmania where they were greeted by the then governor of Tasmania, later the celebrated but tragic arctic explorer, Sir John Franklin. Unfortunately Dumont D’Urville learned from Franklin that the American explorer Charles Wilkes was in Sydney preparing to voyage south. Inspired by the competition, Dumont D’Urville determined to head south in spite of the depletion of his crew. By January of 1840 they had crossed the Antarctic Circle and sighted land. They hoisted the Ticolour at Pointe Géologie and named the land beyond for France, Terre Adélie (Adélie Land). Sightings of Wilkes’ vessel the Porpoise were recorded, but they returned via New Zealand, the Torres Strait, Timor, Réunion, Saint Helena, reaching Toulon, in early November 1840. Brunet II, 882; Nissen BBI 53; Nissen ZBI. Catalogued by Kate Hunter