Pieter de Marees's book, Beschryvinge ende historische verhael vant Gout Koninckrijck van Gunea (Amsterdam, 1602) provides one of the earliest detailed European descriptions of West African society. Published less than ten years after the Dutch began trading in this region, it deals primarily with the Gold Coast, but also contains information on Cape Verde (Senegal), Benin (Nigeria), and Cape Lopez (Gabon). De Marees had visited most of these places himself, and the text served as a source for later works on West Africa, as did the twenty engravings. For many years, de Marees's text has been neglected. The present translation, by two scholars with considerable experience of translating and editing seventeenth-century sources on West Africa, aims at a literal English translation. In addition to annotating the text, the editors have identified most of the African words mentioned. The translation is accompanied by a critical apparatus and by the original engravings. All those interested in Africa, especially historians, anthropologists, sociologists, zoologists, geographers, and linguists.