Ten Years’ Exile: Or Memoirs of That Interesting Period of the Life of the Baroness de Stael-Holstein Written by Herself During the Years 1810, 1811, 1812 and 1813 First Published by Her Son from the Original Manuscript in 1812 by Baroness De Stael-Helstein lands on the shelves of my shop, where it will be found in my Biography section.
Fontwell: Centaur Press, 1968, (First Edition) Hardback in dust wrapper.
Contains: Portrait to the frontispiece;
From the cover: It is an extraordinary fact that Madame de Staels fascinating memoirs Ten Tears Exile have not been available in English since their simultaneous publication in London and Paris in 1821, four years after her death. In 1802 Napoleon decided that there was no room in France for both himself and Madame de Stael, and he therefore sent into exile the woman whose intelligent liberal views were potentially dangerous for him. At first she was banished from Paris, and later, after the suppression of her book on Germany, from France. She began to write her memoirs, and was so carefully watched by Napoleons agents that she even had to change the names of many people she mentioned, substituting English for French names in the manuscript. She stayed in Switzerland, travelled through Germany and Austria, and later through Poland into Russia. After she had stayed in Kiev, Moscow and St. Petersburg Napoleon began his ill-fated expedition to Russia. She left the country in haste for Sweden, and it was there that much of this book was written.
In his introduction to it her eldest son, Auguste, explains how he edited the manuscript and draws attention to the fact that his mothers remarks about Napoleon were extremely bitter because they were written when the author had been suffering most deeply from censorship and exile.
The modern reader will be intrigued by many aspects of this book, including Madame de Staels analysis of Bonapartes psychological make-up, but most of all perhaps by her description of her stay in Russia, after a long wait for a passport, and by her remarks about the Imperial family and the Russian character in general.
The quality of the writing is personal, straightforward and immensely readable, as in all her other books. We can almost hear her discussing Napoleon with the Tsar Alexander, and we go with her on a conducted tour of the Kremlin, the city streets of Moscow and the Russian countryside. Her remarks about Russia are often relevant today: What characterizes this people, is something gigantic of all kinds: ordinary dimensions are not at all applicable to it. And, at the other end of the scale, What the English call comforts are hardly to be met with in Russia.
Introduction by: Margaret Crosland
Very Good in Good Dust Wrapper. Unlaminated dust wrapper a little edgeworn and faded with tanning to the spine. Edges of the text block lightly tanned. Previous owners’ name to the first blank. Text complete, clean and tight otherwise.
Brown boards with Black titling to the Spine. [XXVI] 434 pages. 8¾” x 5½”.