RESTIF DE LA BRETONNE, Nicolas Edme.

Lot 110
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Estimation :
5000 - 6000 EUR
RESTIF DE LA BRETONNE, Nicolas Edme.
The Southern Discovery by a Flying Man, or the French Daedalus; Very Philosophical News: followed by the Letter from a Monkey, &ca. Leïpsick: And is in Paris, 1781. 4 volumes in-12 (168 x 92 mm), 240 pp. for Volume I; pp. 241-436 for Volume II; pp. 437-624, 92 pp. for Volume III; pp. 93-442 for Volume IV; 4 frontispieces, including a leaflet and 19 figures; brown half-calf with corners, smooth back decorated (binding end of 18th century).
Rives Childs, XXIII, 2; BnF, Utopia, 107.
First edition One of Restif's most unique works.
A contemporary novel of 18th century travel stories, notably those of Cook, Bougainville and La Pérouse, La Découverte australe not only raised the philosophical question of a utopia that takes the form of happiness imposed on everyone; it was also a precursor to air navigation,"... preceding the invention of Blanchard's flying boat" (Rives-Childs) "La Découverte australe appeared only in one edition. However, the last two volumes have undergone such changes, after difficulties from censorship and police, that the hardcover edition is a radically different text from the full edition" (Rives
Childs).
Copy with Volume IV in full edition. It therefore ends on page 422 and contains all the diatribes that were subsequently deleted (copies of the second issue end on page 334). On the other hand, the boxes are present in Volume III (in particular the changes for The Letter from a Monkey, and the revisions of the Notice and the deletion of pages 16-17, as described by Rives-Childs).
Beautiful complete copy of the 4 frontispieces, including a leaflet and 19 surprising unsigned figures engraved by Louis Binet, Restif's official engraver. It comes from the Starhemberg Castle Library in Austria, sold in Paris after the war.
Small tear without lack in one sheet of Volume III.
Origin: stamp on the guards and on the titles Fürstlich-Starhemberg'sche Bibliothek
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