Tableau du siècle. by NOLIVOS SAINT-CYR, Paul Antoine, dit Laval…

NOLIVOS SAINT-CYR, Paul Antoine, dit Laval (1727-1803).

Tableau du siècle. Par un Auteur Connu. Geneva, 1759.

First Edition. 12mo, (165 x 88mm), pp. [iv], xix, [i], 227, [1], in contemporary mottled calf, flat spine gilt in continuous pattern, red morocco label lettered in gilt.

A selection of light-hearted essays on a number of subjects including women, justice, monks, literature and fashion. The author, an obscure writer called Nolivos Saint-Cyr, was a captain in the infantry and a self-styled 'comédien', who sometimes signed himself 'Laval'. G. Monval published a biography of him in 1902, is entitled Un Comédien nomade, mort aux Invalides. His Tableau du Siècle is written in an easy, readable style and covers a range of entertaining and at times contentious subjects. One nice aspect of his style is the creation of characters to illustrate his points, so that instead of writing, for example, 'all women are dreadful', he writes 'all women are dreadful. Emilie was born into a rich family &c. &c.' and brings the particular vice or virtue to life with a little story.
'Si la religion est le prétexte de tout, les femmes en sont la veritable cause … On peut dire enfin, avec vérité, que si les femmes conduisent & reglent tout, elles travaillent à se render dignes d'être consultées. C'est, à les bien définir, un melange de légéreté, & de prudence; d'amour des plaisirs, & de respect pour la vertu; de bonté, & de vengeance; d'ambition & de générosité: En un mot, les femmes de notre siécle sont de véritables caméléons' (p. 31).

OCLC lists Princeton, Minnesota, Santa Barbara and Cornell.

Cioranescu 48360.

Print this page View basket Price: £450.00