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The first American to visit Beijing

Braam Houckgeest, André Everard van; Médéric-Louis-Élie Moreau de Saint-Méry, translator Voyage de l'Ambassade de la Compagnie des Indes Orientales Hollandaises, vers l'Empereur de la Chine, en 1794 et 1795; Tiré du journal d'André Everard Van Braam Houckgeest. Publié par M.L.E. Moreau de Saint-Méry. Paris & Strasbourg chez Garnery & chez Levrault An 6 de la République [1798]
Second edition. Two volumes bound in one, 8vo (20.5 x 13.5 cm), pp.[iv], xxxii, 351, [1, blank]; [iv], 286. Text in French. A very good copy bound in contemporary morocco-backed boards. Edges a little worn, and a few pinprick holes to joints. Contemporary printed book labels of the "Bibliothèque de Mr. de Camp-Rond" on reverse of titles.
Cordier BS 2350; Löwendahl 700

The best account of the 1794-5 Dutch embassy to China, written by André Everard van Braam Houckgeest, who had previously served with the Dutch East India Company at Canton and Macao. The Dutch embassy visited many parts of China which had been closed to Europeans, and Braam Houckgeest provides a full description of their journey. The final twenty pages describe the volumes of Chinese paintings and drawings in Braam Houckgeest's own collection. The original manuscript was written in Dutch and translated into French by the émigré bookseller Moreau de Saint-Méry, then resident in Philadelphia, who published the first edition at Philadelphia in two quarto volumes (1797-1798). This second edition only includes the text of the first volume of the Philadelphia edition: subsequent English, German, and Dutch editions used the same truncated text. Braam Houckgeest was born a Dutch citizen, but emigrated to South Carolina in 1783, and subsequently became a citizen of the nascent United States. He is generally described as the first American to visit Bejing and to be presented at the imperial court. This account is dedicated to George Washington.