Page:The Pathfinder of the Seas.djvu/102

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68
MATTHEW FONTAINE MAURY

that Maury's annual report contained materials for a most interesting and valuable book. He warned him that, unless the results of his investigations were thus guarded by a copyright, he would have the chagrin of seeing "some Yankee bookmaker steal his thunder and reap a fortune from it". By the next mail Maury was advised of this. He at once became interested in the undertaking and, with the advice of the Biddies, arrangements were made with Harpers for the publication of such a book. It was begun in the spring of 1854, and finished and ready for the publishers by June 20 of the same year. Maury was of the opinion that it was to be his "great work", and time certainly proved that he had not overestimated its importance.

The title of the book was taken from one of the chapter headings in the sixth edition of his "Sailing Directions", and was originally suggested to Maury by Humboldt,, who wrote that Maury's investigations had produced an amount of useful information sufficient, in his opinion, to constitute a new department of science which he called the Physical Geography of the Seas. The first edition, published early in the year 1855, contained only 274 pages, and was dedicated "as a token of friendship and a tribute to worth" to George Manning of New York who had been of great assistance to Maury in the distribution of the wind and current charts. In 1861, the eighth and last American edition of 474 pages appeared, and at about the same time an English edition was published by Sampson Low, Son and Company in London. This American edition was dedicated to William C. Hasbrouck of Newburgh, New York "as a token of the friendship and esteem, from boyhood till now, of his former pupil"; while the English edition was inscribed to Lord Wrottes-