KERGUELEN DE TREMAREC, Yves-Joseph Marie de. Relation de deux voyages Dans les mers Australes & des Indes, faits en 1771, 1772, 1773 & 1774. Par M. De Kerguelen. Commandant les Vaisseaux du Roi le Berrier, la Fortune, le Gros-Ventre, le Rolland, l’Oiseau & la Dauphine. Ou Extrait du Journal de sa Navigation pour la découverte des terres Australes, & pour la vérification d’une nouvelle route proposée pour abréger d’environ huit cents lieues la traversée d’Europe à la Chine.

Price : 15.000,00 

Rare first edition of this discovery trip to prove the existence of a Southern continent of which most copies were immediately pilloried.

From the library of the Duke d’Aiguillon,

1 in stock

A Paris, chez Knapen & Fils, Lib.-Imp. de la Cour des Aides, 1782.

8vo of viii pp., 244 pp., 1 folded map out of pagination (Southern Land or the Northern port of the Isle of Kerguelen), (2) ll.

Full glazed mottled calf, blindstamped filet around the covers, flat spine with gilt fleurons, label in green morocco, red edges. Contemporary binding.

199 x 126 mm.

Read more

Very rare first edition, illustrated with one map out of pagination suppressed by the French government because of its dedication “a la Patrie.”.

Brossard, Kerguelen le découvreur et ses îles, t. I, p. 582 ; Dunmore, t. I, p. 210 ; Du Rietz, Bibliotheca Polynesiana by Kroepelien, 641 ; Howgego, I, K12, p. 566 ; Ryckebusch, t. II, 4434, p. 111 ; Sabin, 37618 ; Sydney & Spence, Antarctic Miscellany, 650, p. 79. Manque à Chadenat, à Hill.

The work was quickly pilloried as it was forbidden before its release because of the dedication “to the Fatherland”, and was little known outside the strict circle of marine officers (Lapérouse brought the book of Kerguelen to his ship).

This volume became very rare, the government having seized the largest number of copies”. (Hoefer, t. XXVII, 611).

Yves-Joseph Marie de Kerguelen (1734-1797), French navigator, marine officer of the King, is interested in what is one of the major concerns of the scientific and literary circles of his time: the existence of a Southern continent that was situated in the South Pacific and that Bouvet de Lozier thought  seeing an extremity of in 1739. He left in 1771 to discover the Gonneville Land (in 1503, Captain de Gonneville was navigating near the South where he woul’ve found a heavenly country with a delicious climate where hostable natives lived naked in a natural abundance).

Kerguelen’s very important account details his two voyages to explore the Indian Ocean. Commissioned by the French Government, Kerguelen set out to discover the southern continent of “Gonneville Land” in 1771. Kerguelen was hoping to find a rich southern land and, disappointed by what he found, he called his discovery “Desolation Land”. The islands were later named after him by Cook during his third voyage. In addition to Kerguelen’s account the work also includes chapters on the American War of Independence, Madagascar, war against Britain, the navy, scurvy and a method of signalling from ship to ship.

Prestigious provenance: precious copy preserved in its contemporary binding and from the library of the Duke d’Aiguillon, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (1771-1774) and Secretary of State for War (1774) with ex-libris.

See less information

Additional information


A Paris, chez Knapen & Fils, Lib.-Imp. de la Cour des Aides, 1782.


KERGUELEN DE TREMAREC, Yves-Joseph Marie de.