Voyage d'Exploration en Indo-Chine effectué par une commission Française presidée par le Capitaine de Frégatte Doudart de Lagree

Author: Garnier, Francis
Year: 1885
Edition: First edition
Publisher: Paris, Hachette et Cie.
Category: Asia East & Central
Price: € 600.-

Contemporary leather over marbled boards, 4to, pp. 6, xv, 662.
Well over 200 wood engravings in the text, of which about 50 full page with a blank reverse side. Two folding maps bound at the end.

Rebacked with the original spine laid down, new endpapers, name (Capitaine R. Carteros ?) handwritten in top margin of title page, a few strokes and remarks in pencil, as well as a few occasional spots, but the contents overall very clean. The folding maps with some closed tears, repaired with Japanese paper and some larger closed tears on the folds which have not been repaired.

Francis Garnier, a French naval officer, in the early sixties of the 19th century suggested to his superiors the exploration of the valley of the Mekong River. Due to his (too) young age he was placed as second in charge of the Mekong expedition (1866-1868), taking over when Captain Doudart de Lagree fell ill and died of fever. The expedition started in what is now Southern Vietnam, went through Cambodia, Laos and eventually reached the southern Chinese province of Yunnan and from there the river Yangtze and the Chinese coast. He travelled for about 5,400 miles of which the major part was hitherto unexplored.
He returned to France, where he fought in the war against Prussia and then returned to Indochina. He was killed in a battle near Hanoi in 1873.

The full official account of the expedition was published in 1873, following its appearance in abridged form in 1871, 1872 and 1873 in Le Tour du Monde. This account by Garnier was edited by his son Leon.
Extensively illustrated after drawings by Louis Delaporte, the artist on the expedition.

A bright and attractive copy of this book.
Cordier, Indosinica 1013.

Click on a picture to enlarge.