LES RUINES DE PARIS EN 4875. DOCUMENTS OFFICIELS ET INÉDITS. Paris: Librairies Léon Willem ... Paul Daffis ... , 1875. pp. [1-4] [1-3] 4-92 [93] [94: blank] [95: colophon] [96: blank], inserted frontispiece with engraving by E. Tavernier, original Japanese velum printed in black. First edition. Limited to 250 copies of which this is one of 236 numbered copies printed on Holland paper. A pessimistic vision of the future in which the ruins of Paris, destroyed two thousand years before by an apocalyptic cataclysm, are discovered by an expedition from Nouméa in Caledonia. Nearby a modest city inhabited by a group of semi-savages who speak a language similar to French is discovered. The description of the society of its inhabitants offers Franklin the chance to ridicule the ancient and recent customs of the French. The government of Nouméa funds the excavation and restoration of the city of Paris to its former glory and the archeologists from the three principal Nouméan Academies (Arts, Humanities and the Sciences) make funny misinterpretations of many of the artifacts they find (a similar, much later satire in the same vein is Robert Nathan's THE WEANS). Negley, Utopian Literature: A Bibliography 392. Fortunati and Trousson (eds), Dictionary of Literary Utopias, 542-3. Versins, p. 350. A fine copy. (#151230).

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Printing identification statement for this book:
"EXEMPLAIRES DE BIBLIOPHILES / 250 TOUS NUMÉROTÉS / 236 Papier de Hollande / 12 -- Chine / 2 Parchemin" on page [2].