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Le Tabac. Le Livre des Fumeurs et des Priseurs.

BLONDEL, Spire.

Published by Henri Laurens, 1891., Paris:, 1891
Hardcover
From Jeff Weber Rare Books, ABAA (Carlsbad, CA, U.S.A.)

AbeBooks Seller Since March 3, 1998

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About this Item

4to. (263 x 190 mm), [4], xvi, 396, [2] pp. Colored frontispiece, 15 full-page colored engravings, numerous text engravings; scattered foxing and light toning. Quarter blue cloth over marbled boards, red leather spine label with gilt stamping. Very good. FIRST EDITION. This charming late 19th century work on tobacco traces the origins of smoking tobacco from the First Nation Peoples of North America (Indians) and the introduction of smoking to European nations. Considerable material is devoted to the use of tobacco in the Orient, from the Middle-East to China and Japan. Blondel traces smoking back into antiquity and expounds on the history of the smoking pipe itself and the geographic and cultural differences of pipes. For those so inclined, he has a chapter or two on cigars, cigar manufacture and the most-modern cigarette, with directions and illustrations on how to "roll your own" as it were; (p. 173) on arrache le papier, on dispose le tabac, on le roule, on l'allume. There are dozens of illustrations throughout the text and the full-page color illustrated plates are quite pleasant, especially the Chinese and Japanese plates (pp. 94 & 110) and particularly the Seville plate depicting the "Sortie des 'cigarellas' á la manufacture de Seville" which conjures up memories of the wily Carmen. Blondel himself was apparently a bit of a roue and libertine as he also advocated that champagne should be drunk "d'un trait" (chugalug) as soon as it's poured; champagne glasses should not have feet, but rather they should adopt the Graeco-Roman style of a horn of plenty that forces one to drink the entire contents at a single draught. He was also the author of L'Art Intime et le Gout en France (Intimate Art and Taste in France, 1884). Reprinted as late as 1999, the overall tone of this wonderful book is that smoking tobacco is quite sophisticated, modern and a mark of the aristocracy and upper crust; probably not a book that would be promoted or advocated by the American Cancer Society today. However, this is a delightful book, well worth adding to any smoker's bookshelf. Bookseller Inventory # M9685

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Le Tabac. Le Livre des Fumeurs et des ...

Publisher: Henri Laurens, 1891., Paris:

Publication Date: 1891

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition

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