London, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1882-1885. Two volumes in three. 4to (29.2 x 24.6 cm). Volume I (in two parts) (1885): liv, 1111 pp.; two elongate photographic frontispieces; 340 numbered (groups of) woodcuts and many unnumbered, often acting as head- or tailpieces; 75 charts, 35 numbered photographic plates; 15 chromolithographed plates (numbered A-I, K-P), and a very large map (in two parts) of both hemispheres – with the complete itinerary, in a rear pocket in part I; a second, very long, full-colour map on the oceans' salinity in part 2. Volume II (1882): viii, 744, 42, 29 pp.; several text engravings and two plates of which one in chromolithography, and a tipped-in note on the reason for publishing volume II ahead of volume I. Original, uniform, dark-green blind stamped pebbled cloth. Boards with bevelled edges. Gilt title on the spines. Brown endpapers.
The complete narrative of the grandest and most influential circumglobal scientific cruise, and the largest natural history endeavour of the 19th century, published in over 50 volumes dealing with numerous kinds of – mostly marine – life forms. Contains descriptions and illustrations of the ship (including a very large, double-folded plate), equipment (including scientific instruments), and numerous maps and views, for instance a double-sized photographed panorama of Christmas Harbour, Kerguelen (southern Indian Ocean), with the vessel in the distance. Also with photos, wood engravings, and chromolithographs, of landscapes, people, and natural structures and phenomena. In all a treasure trove of new and unique oceanographical, geological, zoological, botanical, and ethnographical observations. The title given above is that for both parts; the first part has a second, alternate title, viz. Narrative of the Cruise of H.M.S. Challenger with a general account of the scientific results of the expedition by Staff-Commander T. H. Tizard, R.N.; Professor H. N. Moseley, F.R.S.; Mr. J. Y. Buchanan, M.A.; and Mr. John Murray, Ph.D.; members of the expedition. Partly Illustrated by Dr. J. J. Wild, artist to the Expedition. Parts First and Second. This volume was published in 1885. The second volume was in fact published earlier – in 1882. It includes Magnetical results.By Commander Maclear, R.N.; Lieutenant Bromley, R.N.; Staff Commander Tizard, R.N.; and Staff-Commander E. W. Creak, R.N.; with Instructions and Memorandum prepared under the Superintendence of the Hydrographer of the Admiralty; Meteorological observations.By Staff-Commander Tizard, R.N., assisted by other Officers of the Expedition. Pressure errors of the Challenger thermometers. By Professor P. G. Tait, M.A., Sec. R.S.E. (Appendix A.); Petrology of St. Paul's Rocks ( Atlantic). By the Rev. Professor A. Renard, F.G.S., F.R.M.S., &c. (Appendix B.). This includes one chromolithographed plate showing minerals. Saint Paul's Rock (now known as the Saint Peter and Saint Paul Archipelago, belonging to Brazil) is the only part of the mid-Atlantic ridge protruding – barely – above sea level. Charles Darwin visited the islets in 1832, during the voyage of the Beagle. A near-mint set. Uncut. Only some very light shelf-wear and the endpapers partly cracked at the inner joints, due to the heavy book blocks; lower outer corner of part I (2) slightly bumped, and two or three sheets a bit spotted. Otherwise impeccable. Rare, especially in this magnificent state. We have never seen a better set. Nissen ZBI, 4754.