[BOYER d'ARGENS, Jean-Baptiste (1703-1771), attributed to.] Thérèse philosophe. Glascow [sic]: n.p., 1773.
Two parts in one volume, duodecimo (110 x 70 mm). Complete with 16 hand-coloured engraved plates including the frontispiece, printed on strong laid paper. (Occasional light marginal soiling, final blank with small loss.) Contemporary red morocco, flat spine gilt in compartments, morocco label titled in gilt, covers with triple-rule border in gilt, edges gilt, marbled endpapers (label chipped at corners, extremities rubbed).
A RARE 18TH-CENTURY EDITION WITH HAND-COLOURED PLATES, IN RED MOROCCO. Thérèse Philosophe, one of the earliest pornographic novels in any European language, builds on the notorious Girard-Cadière scandal, a subject reprised by Huxley in his The Devils of Loudun, and the inspiration for Ken Russell’s The Devils. In the notes for his unfinished last novel, The Story of a Great Sinner, Dostoevsky writes that Thérèse is the book which caused his hero to go astray. WorldCat locates just one copy of this edition, in the National Library of Scotland; not in the British Library, or the Bibliothèque nationale de France. Early bibliographers, confusing this with another edition, call incorrectly for 20 plates; this edition is complete with 15 plates plus the frontispiece. Cohen-DeRicci 734; Dutel A-1083.