Book Description

First edition. 4to (280 x 215 mm), printed by Georges Chamerot (1845-1922) on tinted paper, all edges gilt, illustrated t.p., 24 gillotype plates, some with letterpress, and illustrations in the text by Georges Clairin. Gillotage is a printing process using a zinc plate created by a photographic transfer invented by French lithographer Firmin Gillot (1820-1872) in 1850 and perfected by his son Charles in the 1870's. Beraldi, Les graveurs du XIXe siècle : guide de l'amateur d'estampes modernes, V.22.2; Vicaire, Manuel de l’amateur de livres du XIXème, I.432; Brivois, Bibliographie des ouvrages illustrés du XIXe siècle principalement des livres à gravures sur bois p. 59; Guide du Bibliophile 407 G.145
Dealer Notes
“Sarah Bernhardt’s fancy had been caught by a balloon on exhibit at the fair of 1878, and she persuaded Giffard, the balloonist, to let her go aloft:
“ There was the sky above and the earth beneath… It was splendid ! It was stupefying! Not a sound, not a breath!…
“At twenty minutes to seven we were about 2,500 yards above the earth, and cold and hunger commenced to make themselves felt.
“The dinner was copious—we had ‘foie gras’-- fresh bread and oranges. The cork of our champagne bottle flew up into the clouds with a soft, pretty noise. We raised our glasses in honor of M. Giffard.”---Translation and excerpt The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, v. 22, no. 6 (February, 1964).
Sarah Bernhardt (1844–1923) actress and theater director, the first modern and international star. 'Dans les nuages. Impressions d'une chaise' (In the clouds: impressions of a chair), her first publication, is a semi-autobiographical satirical story about her ascent in a balloon.
Georges Clairin (1843-1919) French painter and illustrator best known for his portraits of Sarah Bernhardt, with whom he had a long friendship and whom he depicted in costume for a number of her roles.
The book is dedicated to Henri Giffard (1825-1882) inventor of the world's first passenger-carrying airship.
Author Sarah Bernhardt
Date n.d. [1878]
Binding Pictorial green cloth gilt, bevelled bds. 'Mouveau et Levesque, relieurs' stamped in lower right corner of upper cover
Publisher Paris, Charpentier
Illustrator Georges Clairin (French, 1843-1919)
Condition Occasional light foxing, else very good
Pages [4]ff., 94pp., [1]f.

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