[Carey, Mathew]. A Short Account of Algiers, and of its Several Wars Against Spain, France, England, Holland, Venice, and Other Powers of Europe [...]. Second Edition, Improved.

Philadelphia, Mathew Carey, 1794.

8vo. 50, (2) pp. With a folding engr. map of the Barbary Coast. Marbled wrappers.


A classic specimen of the American "Barbary captivity narrative". "During the early national period, hundreds of Americans were held captive in the north African states of Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli. Most were captured off American ships that had been seized by Barbary corsairs in the Mediterranean, and most - but not all - were ransomed back to the United States after a captivity that lasted anywhere from a few months to more than a decade" (Daniel Williams, in: Early American Literature Vol. 36/2 [2001], p. 314). Offers "a concise view of the origin of the rupture between Algiers and the United States. To which is added, a copious appendix, containing letters from Captains Penrose, McShane, and sundry other American captives, with a description of the treatment those prisoners' experience" (subtitle). The Irish-born publisher Mathew Carey (1760-1839), a protegé of Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and the Marquis de Lafayette, had emigrated to the U.S. in 1784. While his publishing business struggled, he wrote on various social topics and provided political commentary, reporting on debates in the state legislature. Carey printed the first American version of the Douay-Rheims Bible, popularly known as the "Carey Bible", the first Catholic version of the Bible printed in the U.S.

Browned throughout. Rare.

Evans 26733. OCLC 3496109. Not in Gay.