Auction 136, Lot 292

The earliest view of surfing

"[Lot of 5 - Hawaii]", Cook, James (Capt.)

Subject: Hawaii

Period: 1780-1800 (circa)



See Description

This lot includes very early engraved views of Hawaii from Cook's third and final voyage. Cook explored Hawaii before heading north to explore the Pacific coast, where they tracked past the Bering Strait before being turned back by ice. The expedition then sailed south to Hawaii, where Cook was killed in a dispute with the natives at Karakakooa Bay on February 14th, 1779. Clerke, his second-in-command, took over the expedition and they surveyed further in Hawaii before returning north to continue the exploration for the Northwest Passage.

1) Pirogue des Isles Sandwich, avec les Rameurs Masque., engraved by Benard, uncolored (14.2" x 9"). This exceptional engraving shows a Hawaiian War Canoe filled with men wearing ceremonial gourd helmets and feathers. (A)

2) Vue de Karakakooa, Partie de l'Isle Owyhee, engraved by Benard, uncolored (19.6 x 8.8"). This spectacular view of the bay is filled with small dugouts and larger single sail boats, the majority surrounding Cook's two ships. Good depiction of a Hawaiian village at right. This engraving is known as the earliest view of surfing; a single surfer is shown paddling out among the dugouts. On thick paper with very nice impression. This unfolded edition has some marginal flaws and a light damp stain at left. (A)

3) Terreeoboo, Koning van Owhijhee, Kapitein Cook Geschenken Brengende, uncolored (14.4 x 8.8"). This fine copper engraving shows the royal canoe of King Terreeoboo with a large sail and many men paddling. The royal members are wearing cloaks and headdresses, and are stationed in the middle of the boat. There are over 40 men on this single boat. It is closely followed by two large outriggers, each with about 20 men rowing. From a Dutch edition. Nice impression with two short marginal tears. Three fragments of brown paper pasted on verso for no apparent reason and a tear entering 1/2" into image at right is closed on verso with cello tape. (B)

4) Terreeoboo, King of Owhyhee, an Island in the North Pacific Ocean, bringing Presents to Captn. Cook, by J. Webber & W. Grainger, hand color, (7 x 5.4"). A smaller engraving of the royal canoe shown. (A)

5) A Canoe of the Sandwich Islands, in the North Pacific Ocean, with the Rowers masked., by J. Webber & Page, hand color, (7 x 5.4"). A smaller version of #1 above. (A)



See individual descriptions.

Estimate: $600 - $800

Sold for: $450

Closed on 6/1/2011