The Voyages of Jacques Cartier

The Voyages of Jacques Cartier

Book - 1993
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Jacques Cartier's voyages of 1534, 1535, and 1541constitute the first record of European impressions of the St Lawrence region of northeastern North American and its peoples. The Voyages are rich in details about almost every aspect of the region's environment and the people who inhabited it.

As Ramsay Cook points out in his introduction, Cartier was more than an explorer; he was also Canada's first ethnographer. His accounts provide a wealth of information about the native people of the region and their relations with each other. Indirectly, he also reveals much about himself and about sixteenth-century European attitudes and beliefs. These memoirs recount not only the French experience with the Iroquois, but alo the Iroquois' discovery of the French.

In addition to Cartier's Voyages, a slightly amended version of H.P. Biggar's 1924 text, the volume includes a series of letters relating to Cartier and the Sieur de Roberval, who was in command of cartier on the last voyage. Many of these letters appear for the first time in English.

Ramsay Cook's introduction, 'Donnacona Discovers Europe,' rereads the documents in the light of recent scholarship as well as from contemporary perspectives in order to understand better the viewpoints of Cartier and the native people with whom he came into contact.

Publisher: Toronto : University of Toronto Press, 1993
ISBN: 9780802060006
0802060005
Branch Call Number: 971.0113 VOY 1993
Characteristics: 177 p. : ill
Additional Contributors: Cook, Ramsay

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spacecat
Jul 10, 2012

This "new" edition is dated 1993 and would benefit from a map of the ships routes that doesn't hide PEI and Anticosti behind the binding. Literary Reviews of Canada in 2006 listed the account of the second voyage as the number 1 ( of 100) most influential book ever written, for Canada. This reader suggests reading the scholarly "Introduction" by Ramsay Cook AFTER you have read the reports of Jacques Cartier's three voyages to Canada. The introduction is really an academic analysis with conclusions, and contains many (spoiler) quotes from the older documents. It will prevent the pleasure of your own fresh reading of the accounts of the voyage, but is interesting to finish with, after you have drawn your own conclusions.
All Canadians should read these short accounts of Cartier's Voyages: about the abundance beyond bounds of the Great Auk (extinct 1844), and of Donnaconna's people near Quebec City (also disappeared without much of a trace after Jacques Cartier's and Roberval's visits in the mid 1500s). And learn how freely and frequently Cartier lied to them and made them captives. Again, and again. I can't believe we name things in Canada after him. Not at all like the Sieur de Champlain.

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spacecat
Jul 10, 2012

spacecat thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

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spacecat
Jul 10, 2012

22 September 1538
Translation of an order from King Francis I to pay Jacques Cartier for, among other things
"upkeep of a certain number of savage people whom he has fed and kept at our order for two years now . . ."

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