Paris: Garnier Freres, ca. 1880s. Hardcover. Octavo size, 543 pp., in French. Very good. Item #18111603
"Les Aventures de Telemaque" follows the character Telemachus from Homer's "Odyssey"; the son of Odysseus, Telemachus embarks on an educational journey in search of news of his father, who has not returned after the Trojan War. In Fénelon's story, the elements of the ancient literature are used as a scathing criticism of Louis XIV, at the time the king of France, of his totalitarian rule and wasteful spending; Louis XIV was angered by the publication of the book, and, as Fénelon had been confined to his archdiocese because of an earlier religious controversy, the king refused to lift the order even after the controversy was resolved.
First published in 1699, "Les Aventures" went on to influence notable French writers and philosophers such as Montesquieu and Jean-Jacques Rousseau; we believe this volume to have been published circa 1880s because of the style of the binding.
___DESCRIPTION: Full red cloth with a decorative pattern in black and gilt and title in gilt on the front board, spine with gilt lettering and four sections with black and gilt decorative ornaments, decorative and ruled borders with flower design in black on the rear board, bevelled boards, all edges gilt, light blue endpapers, title page with a black-and-white illustration, black-and-white illustrations and engravings by various artists throughout; octavo size (9.5" by 6.25"), pagination: [i-v] vi-xxi [xxii-xxiii] xxiv-xlviii [xlix-li] 1-489 [490-491] 492. Please note the text is in French. Bookseller's ticket "A. Pradels / Foreign Books / San Francisco, Calif." on the front paste-down endpaper.
___CONDITION: Volume is very good, with a strong, square text block with solid hinges, the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; boards are clean overall with some minor soiling to the rear board, spine is sunned, some rubbing to the corners and to the head and tail of the spine, corners are gently bumped, age-toning to the endpapers and to the front and rear flyleaves, and some slight foxing to a few interior pages.
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