With 71 / 48 / 46 Illustrations by Riou. London and New York: George Routledge and Sons, 1876 / 1877 / 1877. 16 pp undated ads in third volume. Original terra-cotta / green / terra-cotta cloth pictorially decorated in black and gilt.
First fully-illustrated (and first hardbound) British edition of one of Verne's earliest works. This is not a mere travelogue, but rather a stirring tale of mystery and adventure involving many narrow escapes.
The contents of a shark's stomach include a bottle that holds notes written in three different languages... Together they may reveal the whereabouts of Captain Harry Grant, whose ship the Britannia was lost over two years ago. While the latitude of Grant is known from the notes [37 degrees south], the longitude is a mystery... Lord Glenarvan makes it his quest to find Grant; together with his wife, Harry Grant's children and the crew of his yacht the Duncan, they set off for South America... [The searchers encounter numerous dangers as they trace the 37th parallel across South America, then across Australia, and finally across New Zealand...] [Kytasaari]
One of the few Verne works that Sampson Low never published, LES ENFANTS DU CAPITAINE GRANT (1867) was first published in English in 1873 -- in one volume by Lippincott of Philadelphia, titled IN SEARCH OF THE CASTAWAYS. During the first three months of 1876, Ward Lock & Tyler of London issued the three parts separately in their wrappered series "Youth's Library of Wonders and Adventures" (with only three illustrations in each) -- as THE MYSTERIOUS DOCUMENT, ON THE TRACK and AMONG THE CANNIBALS. Shortly thereafter, beginning in April 1876 and extending into 1877, Routledge issued these three separate volumes (but a different translation).
We have seen these volumes in five different colors of cloth (no precedence): brown, olive green, red, and -- the two appearing here -- terra-cotta and green. All three volumes are in near-fine condition (minor rubbing at the extremities but otherwise very little exterior wear, and a bit of cracking of (and one small hole in) the original pale-peach endpapers; the two latter volumes bear similar school-prize inscriptions both dated June 23, 1877. Since these volumes were published months apart, it is tough to find the complete group of three today. See Taves & Michaluk V005; Myers 34. Item #15091