The first overland journey from Spain to the East Indies, by way of Iran

Cubero Sebastian, Pedro. Breve relacion de la peregrinacion que ha hecho de la mayor parte del mundo.

Madrid, Juan Garcia Infaçon, 1680.

4to. (20), 360 pp. Title-page within a border of cast fleurons, woodcut arms of the dedicatee Charles II of Spain, and several woodcut initials and tailpieces. Modern gilt blue morocco by the leading Barcelona binder Emilio Brugalla (1901-87), also active in Madrid, signed at the foot of the front turn-in: "Brugalla 1946", with the arms of the Spanish bibliophile Isidoro Fernandez (1878-1963) stamped in gold on front and back in a blind-stamped panel, double fillets on binding edges and richly gold-tooled turn-ins, gilt edges.


First edition of an interesting and detailed account of the first overland journey from Spain to the East Indies (1671-80) made by the Spanish missionary Sebastian Pedro Cubero. Interestingly, Cubero covered most of his route by land, as would later Careri, thus constantly being able to observe the customs, religions, ceremonies and costumes of the peoples he visited, describing them in considerable detail. After spending time in Italy, where he was appointed as a missionary to Asia and the East Indies, Cubero travelled by way of Istanbul and Moscow to Iran, visiting Isfahan ("Hispaham") and Bandar Abbas, after which he finally arrived in India. After crossing to Malacca he was imprisoned by the Dutch and later banished from the city. He then proceeded to the Philippines and ultimately, by way of Mexico, back to Europe. "After a stint as confessor in the imperial army in Hungary, Cubero became one of the notable travellers of the seventeenth century. What set him apart was the variety of his traveller's hats. Most obviously a missionary [...], he also became [...] a representative figure of the whole exploratory enterprise. By circumnavigating the globe in his travels, he was recognized in his own time to be another Magellan, Drake, or Cavendish" (Noonan).

With bookplates on pastedown; t. p. has contemporary ownership of Pere de Ribes-Vallgomera de Boixadors, Marques de Alferras, ennobled by Philip V in 1702. Some occasional foxing and a small restoration, replacing the outer lower corner of the title-page in a subtle facsimile. Very narrow margins, occasionally just shaving the headlines and quire signatures, otherwise in very good condition. Rare in the market: two copies appeared at auction in the last 50 years.

Palau 65756. Sabin 17819. OCLC 14110894. Howgego C225. Lach & Van Kley III, 360. Maggs cat. 495, 303. This ed. not in Salvá. For the author cf. F.T. Noonan, The road to Jerusalem: pilgrimage and travel in the age of discovery (2007), p. 104.

Art.-Nr.: BN#34137 Schlagwort: