A Collection Of Curious Travels & Voyages In Two Tomes

A collection of curious travels & voyages in two tomes: the first containing Dr. Leonhart Rauwolff’s Itinerary into the Eastern Countries, as Syria, Palestine, or the Holy Land, Armenia, Mesopotamia, Assyria, Chaldea & c., translated from the High Dutch by Nicholas Staphorst and the second taking in many parts of Greece, Asia Minor, Egypt, Arabia Felix, and Petrea, Ethiopia, the Red-Sea & c. from the Observations of Mons. Belon, Mr. Vernon, Dr. Spon, Dr. Smith, Dr. Huntingdon, Mr. Greaves, and others, to which are added, three catalogues of such trees, shrubs, and herbs as grow in the Levant.

John Ray, Fellow of the Royal Society. Printed by S. Smith and B. Walford, 1693. Layton Collection 12644

  • Front Cover
  • Overview
    This volume of travelogues and botanical observations was compiled by famed naturalist, biologist and fellow of the Royal Society, John Ray (1627-1705); and stands as one of his most popular works, alongside over two dozen other publications on biology, botany and theology, many of them pioneering works in their field.
  • Dominating Ray’s compilation is this 1693 translation of German physician and botanist Leonhart Rauwolff’s celebrated 1573-75 journey to the Levant and Mesopotamia – the first by a European botanist since the Middle Ages. Ostensibly funded by his brother-in-law as a trip to collect new herbs and drugs that could be imported by the family’s mercantile firm, Rauwolff’s published account of the journey fascinated Europeans of the day with exotic tales of lands aplenty with fruits and vegetables of all kinds, as well as the curious new drink of coffee, which, as he describes, is “black as ink”, good for illnesses of the stomach, and which the locals drink “out of China cups, as hot as they can”.


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