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VOLTAIRE, (1694--1778)
[Works. 1784]
Oeuvres completes de Voltaire. Tome premier. (- soixante-dizieme).
A Basle de l'imprimerie de Jean-Jaques Tourneisen, avec des caractères de G. Haas, 1784--1789.
70 vols : engr. frontis. port. ; 21.6 cm. (8º)

A shared edition of the collected works of Voltaire also found with the imprint 'A Gotha, Chez Charles Guillaume Ettinger' as in vols XXXIV, XLI and XLIII of the Soane copy; it is based on the celebrated 'Kehl edition' produced by the playwright Beaumarchais with the editorial assistance of Condorcet and others. Shortly after Voltaire's death in 1778, many of whose works were banned in France under the ancien régime, Beaumarchais bought the copyrights to his manuscripts from the publisher Panckoucke and established the 'Société Littéraire-Typographique' in Kehl, Baden (facing Strasbourg across the Rhine), with types by Baskerville and three paper mills to evade censorship and produce a luxury edition in 70 volumes octavo, 1784--89, including plates after J.M. Moreau le jeune, and a duodecimo edition in 92 volumes. The first 51 volumes of the present edition are a page-for-page reprint of the octavo Kehl edition without the plates, including only a frontispiece portrait in vol. I which is by Demautort after Nicolas de Largillière. The remaining volumes contain the correspondence with the addition of letters from the King of Prussia and Voltaire (vols LII--LIII) and an altered general arrangement with the correspondence with the Empress of Russia in vol. LV, the general correspondence in vols LVI--LXVIII, and that with D'Alembert in vols LXIX--LXX together with 'Éloges' of Voltaire by King Frederick II of Prussia and J.F. de La Harpe in vol. LXX. An additional volume LXXI was published in 1790 with a life of Voltaire by Condorcet. See: M. Germann, Johann Jakob Thurneysen der Jüngere, 1754-1803 (Basel 1973); Georges Bengesco, Voltaire: bibliographie de ses oeuvres (Paris 1882--90), vol. IV, pp. 146--7; Catalogue général des livres imprimés de la Bibliothèque nationale. Auteurs. CCXIV. Voltaire (Paris 1978), 194--6.

Copy Notes A few pencil annotations at the beginning of vol. LXVIII.

Binding Late C18th tree calf, neo-classical spine with gilt pentaglyph and metope roll tool and oval patera ornament, black and red spine-labels.

Reference Number 3786


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