[VOLTAIRE (1694-1778).] Candide ou L'Optimisme, traduit de l'allemand de Mr. le Docteur Ralph. [Geneva: Gabriel Cramer,] 1759.
No VAT on hammer price or buyer's premium.
[VOLTAIRE (1694-1778).] Candide ou L'Optimisme, traduit de l'allemand de Mr. le Docteur Ralph. [Geneva: Gabriel Cramer,] 1759.

Details
[VOLTAIRE (1694-1778).] Candide ou L'Optimisme, traduit de l'allemand de Mr. le Docteur Ralph. [Geneva: Gabriel Cramer,] 1759.

12º (160 x 92mm). With blank N7 and 'Avis au Relieur' leaf at end. Woodcut title vignette, other woodcut ornaments and vignettes in text. (Washed.) Red morocco gilt by Lortic, triple gilt fillet on sides, spine compartments directly lettered andrichly ornamented, , gilt turn-ins, marbled and gilt edges (a little light rubbing). Provenance: B. Quaritch (collation note ) – Lord Kennet of the Dene (bookplate).

FIRST EDITION of Voltaire's famed philosophical tale. The complexity of its clandestine publication is evident from the fact that Bengesco lists eight different editions, all of which appeared without an imprint in 1759; Bengesco identifies the present edition of 299 pages (Morize 59a) as the first, the typographic ornaments revealing the printer to be Cramer of Geneva. Among other characteristics of the first edition noted in his supplement to volume I (vol. II, p. xvi), are the printing error on p. 103 ('ce' repeated twice) and the presence of the 'Advice to the Binder' leaf at the end. In Voltaire and Candide (1959) Wade argues that Voltaire first had a trial edition made (Morize 59x), but he nevertheless takes Morize 59a 'to be the authoritative edition'. Pomeau, in Complete Works of Voltaire vol. 48 (1980), places Morize 59a first among the editions of 299 pages, putting the Morize 59x edition, which originated in London, second. Cramer is well known as the publisher of all Voltaire's important works from the end of 1756 onwards. Voltaire himself became known as the Sage of Ferney, the substantial estate just over the border from Geneva, which he bought in 1758. His extraordinary secrecy over the publication of Candide was not without cause. On 2 March 1759, the work was denounced by the Council of Geneva who ordered it to be destroyed. Bengesco 1434; En français dans le texte 160; Morize 59a; Pomeau 299G; Rochebilière 846; Wade 1.
Special notice

No VAT on hammer price or buyer's premium.

Brought to you by

Eugenio Donadoni
Eugenio Donadoni

More from Valuable Books and Manuscripts Including Cartography

View All
View All