Five Volumes of the "Library of Masterpieces of the Contemporary French Novel"
[French Literature]. Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre
du Roman Contemporain. Realists. Comprising:
Ludovic Halévy. The Cardinal Family.
Twenty-seven Etchings [by Louis Muller after drawings by Charles
Lucien Leandre. Translated by George B. Ives]. [Together
with:] Edmond and Jules de Goncourt. Germinie
Lacerteux. Ten Etchings [by Louis Muller after
drawings by George Jeanniot. Translated by John Chestershire].
[And:] Alphonse Daudet. Sapho: Parisian
Customs. Ten Etchings [by Eugene Abot and Albert
Duvivier after drawings by Stanislas Rejchan. Translated by T. F.
Rogerson]. [And:] Théophile Gautier. Mademoiselle de
Maupin. Nineteen Etchings [by Francois-Xavier Le
Sueur after drawings by Edouard Toudouze. Translated by I. G.
Burnham]. In Two Volumes. Philadelphia: Printed Only for
Subscribers by George Barrie & Son, . Limited to 1,000
numbered copies printed on Japanese vellum paper, these volumes
each being No. 208. Together four works in five octavo volumes.
Each volume with etched plates in two states, one on Japanese
vellum paper and one on India paper mounted. Descriptive tissue
guards. The Cardinal Family has in addition seventeen head-
and tail-piece vignettes ("en-têtes et culs-de-lampe"), printed on
separate leaves, with tissue guards.
Uniformly bound in contemporary full brown levant morocco. Covers with gilt single fillet border; smooth spines decoratively tooled in gilt in a floral design with navy blue and light brown morocco onlays and light brown morocco label ruled and lettered in gilt; board edges with gilt-dotted rule; turn-ins decoratively tooled in gilt; blue, green, and white patterned silk doublures and liners; top edge gilt, others untrimmed. Spines very slightly darkened; light rubbing to some joints and spine extremities. Slight edge browning to a few leaves. Otherwise a fine set, in a attractive contemporary binding.
From the library of John Carroll Collins.
Please visit HA.com/6117 for an extended description of this lot.
Ludovic Halévy (1834-1908). The Cardinal Family. Twenty-Seven Etchings. [The Etchings are by Louis Muller and Drawings by Charles Lucien Leandre. Translated by George B. Ives]. Philadelphia: Printed Only for Subscribers by George Barrie & Son, [n.d., 1897].
Volume III of the Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre du Roman Contemporain. Realists. Octavo. 207 pages. Ten etched plates (including frontispiece), each in two states, one on Japanese vellum paper and one on India paper mounted. Seventeen etched head- and tail-piece vignettes ("en-têtes et culs-de-lampe"), printed on separate leaves rather than in the text, with tissue guards. Joints and spine extremities lightly rubbed, front joint more so; light rubbing to upper corner of back cover. Light edge browning and wear to fore-edge of text leaves. Stamped "512" in blue on the recto of the rear free endpaper.
First published in 1883 as La Famille Cardinal, Ludovic Halévy's study of lower-class Parisian life during the early years of the Third Republic is considered the best of his fiction, together with the sentimental novel L'Abbé Constantin (1882), which was a huge success with the public.
Edmond (1822-1896) and Jules (1830-1870) de Goncourt. Germinie Lacerteux. Ten Etchings. [The Etchings are by Louis Muller and Drawings by George Jeanniot. Translated by John Chestershire]. Philadelphia: Printed Only for Subscribers by George Barrie & Son, .
Volume IV of the Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre du Roman Contemporain. Realists. Octavo. 387 pages. Ten etched plates, including frontispiece, each in two states, one on Japanese vellum paper and one on India paper mounted. Descriptive tissue guards. Very light rubbing to joints and spine extremities, top corner of rear cover very slightly bumped. Old bookseller's blue ink price note on front flyleaf.
The Goncourt brothers's novel Germinie Lacerteux (first published in 1864), which was the most influential of their works, particularly as a model of Naturalism, "tells the story of a country girl in service in Paris who, after early experiences of rape and pregnancy, becomes the servant of the elderly Mademoiselle de Varandeuil. Germinie lives a double life of devotion to her mistress and wild dissipation with her lovers...Exploited and abused by her lovers, she sinks ever deeper into fits of hysteria and promiscuity, drunkenness and theft, until she dies in a state of utter wretchedness...The story is based on the life of Rose Malingre, the servant of the Goncourt brothers; like Mademoiselle de Varandeuil, they knew nothing of her excesses until after her death" (The New Oxford Companion to Literature in French).
Alphonse Daudet (1840-1897). Sapho: Parisian Customs. Ten Etchings. [The Etchings are by Eugene Abot and Albert Duvivier and Drawings by Stanislas Rejchan. Translated by T. F. Rogerson]. Philadelphia: Printed Only for Subscribers by George Barrie & Son, .
Volume V of the Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre du Roman Contemporain. Realists. Octavo. 365 pages. Ten etched plates (including frontispiece), each in two states, one on Japanese vellum paper and one on India paper mounted. Descriptive tissue guards. Lower corner of back cover lightly bumped; joints lightly rubbed; tiny rubbed area at foot of spine. Stamped "511" in blue on recto of rear free endleaf.
"Daudet's novel Sapho (1884) is the story of a courtesan moving in a Parisian artistic milieu who falls in love. She talks her young artist into living with her only to lose him to the forces of convention. The novel is a rather pedestrian imitation of Dumas' Camille. Still, it has one scene which many found particularly shocking: the young man carries Sapho upstairs to a bedroom. 'We have seldom seen a book more objectionable,' concluded the literary critic of Publishers' Weekly. A Philadelphia court sentenced the news dealer who sold it in America to a year in prison" (Laura Hapke, Girls who Went Wrong: Prostitutes in American Fiction, 1885-1917 (1989), page 11).
Théophile Gautier (1811-1872). Mademoiselle De Maupin. Nineteen Etchings. [The Etchings are by Francois-Xavier Le Sueur and Drawings by Edouard Toudouze. Translated by I. G. Burnham]. In Two Volumes. Philadelphia: Printed Only for Subscribers by George Barrie & Son, .
Volumes IX and X of the Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre du Roman Contemporain. Realists. lxxxiii, 249; 317 pages. Nine etched plates in Volume I, and ten in Volume II (including frontispieces), all in two states, one on Japanese vellum paper and one on India paper mounted. Descriptive tissue guards. Stamped "506" and "507" in blue on recto of rear free endleaves.
Volume I with a few tiny rubbed areas at top of both joints and to top corner of rear cover; a couple of minor scuff marks. Tiny dark stain to tissue guard for second plate (on India paper mounted) facing page 68, just visible on outer margin of plate and offset onto verso of first plate; tiny dark stain to outer edge of page 196; slight crease to preliminary blank or third flyleaf. Volume II with tiny bit of rubbing to front joint and head of spine. Small area of slight discoloration to outer blank margin of page 284. Slight rubbing and edge browning to a some leaves in both volumes.
Laid in to Volume I is an undated pamphlet entitled "Théophile Gautier" on front wrapper, with imprint on rear wrapper: "The University Press, Cambridge, U.S.A." Small octavo. 8 pages. Original gray wrappers printed in dark green. Slight vertical crease indicating that it was once folded in half vertically.
Théophile Gautier's novel Mademoiselle de Maupin (1835) "whose 'Préface is better known than the novel itself as a manifesto of l'art pour l'art...The novel was, however, much admired by Baudelaire and Balzac, and by fin-de-siècle writers and artists, both in France and elsewhere, as a pure expression of dilettantish and dandyish aestheticism and eroticism...Based on the strange adventures of the 17th-c. bisexual Madeleine de Maupin, who dressed and behaved like a swashbuckling swordsman and horseman, Gautier's novel, in conscious imitation of As You Like It, plays on the erotic attractions and misunderstandings of a young foursome" (The New Oxford Companion to Literature in French).
"The celebration of sensual love, regardless of gender, was radical, and the book was banned by the New York Society for the Suppression of Vice and authorities elsewhere" (Wikipedia, under Julie d'Aubigny).
The Bibliothèque des Chefs-d'Oeuvre du Roman Contemporain consisted of two parts, Realists and Romancists, with ten volumes in each. The other five volumes in the Realists are: Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (two volumes); The Lady of the Camellias by Alexandre Dumas Fils (one volume); and A Page of Love by Emile Zola (two volumes).
The ten volumes in the Romancists are: The Confession of a Child of the Century by Alfred de Musset (one volume); [Nouvelles]: The Two Mistresses, Emmeline, The Son of Titian, Frédéric and Bernerette, and Pierre and Camille by Alfred de Musset (one volume); His Excellency the Minister by Jules Claretie (one volume); Raphael by Alphonse Lamartine (one volume); Bohemian Life by Henri Murger (one volume); Monsieur de Camors by Octave Feuillet (one volume); Gerfaut by Charles de Bernard (two volumes); The Devil's Pool by George Sand (one volume); and King of Camargue by Jean Aicard (one volume).
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