Maury, Matthew F.; The Physical Geography of the Sea. 1st edition, New York, Harper & Brothers, 1855. Quarto, pp. xxiv, 25-274, with 12 plates (8 rear folding, including text illustrations, maps, tables, charts).
The text is complete and in the original blind stamped brown cloth with gilt titles and gilt vignette on the cover. Spine expertly replaced with matching brown cloth and original parts of spine preserved including titles. The binding is tight and clean, owner’s name penned on front end sheet, Maury obituary notice in acid free sleeve inside cover. Text and plates very clean with light foxing to rear. In very good condition.
This work is ranked by Horblit as one of the 100 most important works in science. This is the first textbook of modern oceanography. Maury (1806-1873) was a distinguished American hydrographer and naval officer. He was instrumental in establishing an international system of recording oceanographic data, based on the worldwide cooperation of naval vessels and the merchant marine. Maury was also the first to give a complete description of the Gulf Stream, and to mark out specific routes to be followed in crossing the Atlantic Ocean. Contents includes: The Gulf Stream; Influence of the Gulf Stream upon Climates; The Atmosphere; Red Fogs & Sea Dust; On the Probable Relation between Magnetism & the Circulation of the Atmosphere; Currents of the Sea; The Open Sea in the Arctic Ocean; The Salts of the Sea; Equatorial Cloud-Ring; Geological Agency of the Winds; Depths of the Ocean; Basin of the Atlantic; The Winds; The Climates of the Ocean; The Drift of the Sea; Storms; Routes. In addition to being the first textbook of modern oceanography, this work was among the first to recognize the sea as a separate branch of science, with distinct problems of its own.