Specializing in
Rare Books and Manuscripts
on Spain, Portugal and their former overseas possessions
Latin America, Brazil, Africa and Asia


Cultura Americana que contem huma relaçaõ do terreno, clima, producçaõ, e agricultura das colonias britanicas no norte da America, e nas Indias Occidentais, Com Observações sobre as vantagens, e desavantagens de se estabelecer nellas, em comparaçaõ com a Grã-Bretanha, e Irlanda.  Por hum Americano.  Traduzida da Lingua Ingleza, debaixo dos auspicios, e de ordem de sua Alteza Real o Principe Regente Nosso Senhor, Pelo Bacharel José Feliciano Fernandes Pinheiro . . .   Publicado por Fr. José Mariano da Conceiçaõ Velloso . . .   2 vols. in 1. 


Lisbon, na Off. de Antonio Rodrigues Galhardo, 1799.


Small 4to.  I: (3) ff., 419 pp., (1) f.  With 1 folding map printed at Arco do Cego & engraved by Neves.  II: 179 pp., (3) ff.   Near contemporary calf, spine gilt (slightly worn, head & foot of spine chipped).   Signature Ss (pp. 321-28) of Vol. I in duplicate, some slight traces of worming on inside covers.

Cultura Americana is a partial translation of a little-known and anonymous work, American Husbandry, containing an account of the soil, climate, production and agriculture of the British colonies in North America and the West Indies, with observations on the advantages and disadvantages of settling in them, compared with Great Britain and Ireland, by an American (London, J. Bew, 1775).   The translator prudently omits the last four chapters in which the author speculates on the importance of the colonies to Britain, on manufacturing in America, American political representation, the mutual importance of each country, on a union between Great Britain and her colonies, and the possibility that America might become the head of the empire "in a period extremely distant," probably because the idea of separating Brazil from Portuguese rule would have been anathema to the Portuguese authorities.

In his edition of the work (New York, Columbia University Press, 1939 ), Harry J. Carman considered that "of all our colonial literature American Husbandry is the most accurate and comprehensive account of the English colonies in America and gives by far the best description of their agricultural practices.   The recommendations for the improvement of farming compare favorably with those of any modern text book on the subject and are much superior in style and presentation to any other English or American agricultural books of the eighteenth century" (p. xli).   Authorship has been attributed to Dr. John Mitchell, a distinguished botanist who emigrated from England, settled in Virginia in about 1700, and had returned to England in 1748 where he died in 1768;  also to the agriculturalist, Arthur Young.

José Feliciano Fernandes Pinheiro was elected Deputy of the Cortes, became a minister at the Imperial Court in Brazil and was created first Visconde de S. Leopoldo.   He was a founder member and first president of the Insitituto Histórico e Geográfico do Brasil and a member of several distinguished European and American scientific and literary societies.   Vol. II was translated by Antônio Carlos Ribeiro de Andrada, Deputy of the Cortes and later a Senator and a member of the Imperial Council.   Ventura da Silva Neves was a skilled engraver and was employed at the printing press of the Arco do Cego.

Borba de Moraes (1983) II, 674 & Bibliogr. Brasileira do Periódo Colonial, 285 (under José Feliciano Fernandes Pinheiro).  Rodrigues 983, "raro."   Bosch, Brasilien-Bibliothek, 258.   Sacramento Blake I, 129 & IV, 417.   Innocêncio IV, 321 & VIII, 110.   A Casa Literária do Arco do Cego (1799-1801), 99.   Sabin 62954 & 106062.   Gonçalves Rodrigues, A tradução em Portugal, I, 2177.   (Cf. Rich, Biblioteca Americana Nova, p. 209 & Soares, História da Gravura Artística em Portugal, I, p. 378.)     


Place an order