Tableau de l'Angleterre et de l’Italie, par M. d’Archenholz, ancien capitaine au service de S. M. le Roi de Prusse. Traduit de l’Allemand. De l’Angleterre. Tome Premier [-Tome Second]. De l’Italie [Tome III though not so designated]. Strasbourg, J.G. Treuttel, 1788.
First Edition in French? Three volumes, 12mo, (190 x 125 mm), pp. xii, 288; [ii], 326; [ii], 376, marginal dampstaining throughout volume I, pagination erratic in volume I between p. 97 and p. 121, tear to III Z3 (p. 269) across the text but with no loss, uncut throughout in the original brightly coloured printed wrappers, blue and red spotted, spines faded and chipped at head and foot.
An attractive, unsophisticated copy in contemporary decorative wrappers of this Prussian officer’s account of England and Italy. A professor of history with an interest in contemporary European politics, Archenholz wrote widely on current events. From 1791 he lived in France and ran a German language newspaper, Minerva, which reported the events of the French Revolution. His initial enthusiasm for the Revolution was challenged by its increasing violence and in 1792 the opinions expressed in his paper forced him to flee France in order to escape the guillotine.
The present work was originally published as England und Italien, Leipzig 1785. It was a very popular work which saw many editions and was translated into French and English. This is one of several editions of this French translation by the poet and dramatist, Ludwig von Bilderbeck. A two volume edition of the first part of the work only, that on England, was printed in Brussels by le Francq as Tableau de l’Angleterre, contenant des anecdotes curieuses et intéressantes, 1788. In the same year, there was a Gotha edition printed by Ettinger, including both parts on England and Italy and also a two volume Paris edition printed by Volland, including both English and Italian parts. Both parts were also translated into English, the first two volumes as A picture of England, containing a description of the laws, customs and manners of England, London 1789 and the final volume as A picture of Italy, London 1791.
‘La Grande-Bretagne, cette reine des îles, est si différente de tous les autres Etats de l’Europe, par la forme de son gouvernement, par ses loix, ses usages, ses mœurs et la manière d’agir et de penser de ses habitans, qu’elle parait plutôt appartenir à un autre globe qu’à celui où nous vivons. Le contraste est sur-tout frappant lorsqu’on passe de France en Angleterre. On se croit transporté dans une autre planète’ (I pp. 1-2).
OCLC lists copies at BN, Lyon, Yverdon, Institut Catholique de Paris, Yale, Newberry and Queens University Library.