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Coup-d'oeil sur Pétersbourg.
Ponthieu Paris 1821 - Octavo (22 x 13.5 cm). [4], 239 pp.; waterstain to last 5 leaves. Uncut in contemporary pink wrappers with beige paper spine, hand written title to spine. Fresh example, uncut, of these uncommon notes on Russian culture, people, politics, history and geography. Chopin (1796-1871) was a French-Russian writer and traveller. Born in St Petersburg, he became secretary and librarian to Prince Kurakin, former Russian ambassador to France. Inspired by his experiences in the Russian Tsarist empire, he wrote several books on the matter. He is also known for his translations of several works by Pushkin and Dickens. This work is a compilation of Chopin's notes from his time in Saint Petersburg. Initially intending to write a history book, as he explains in the preface, Chopin then decided to publish a work with a more personal view. Chopin describes the city, social and political climate during Alexander I's reign, Russian army, religion, music, food, superstitions, aristocratic families and the Russian language. Each description is subjective, infused with Chopin's personal impressions and opinions, which makes it a fascinating and easy read. About Russian literature, Chopin writes: "La litterature russe a des richesses que l'Europe ignore" before giving a literary criticism of some Russian writers, and adding some literary pieces such as poems and plays in the style of various Russian authors. A rare work: we never had a copy before and WorldCat locates only six copies in public holdings in the West. Quérard II, 374. [Attributes: Soft Cover]
      [Bookseller: Shapero Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2016-09-25           Check availability:      ZVAB    


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