Small, light brown leather-bound French edition of The Imitation of Jesus Christ by Thomas a Kempis. Embossed with a cross in gold and black on the front and the initials "E.C." Gold edging. Edited by Hugues Felicité Robert de Lamennais (1782-1854). Published in Dijon by Pellion & Marchet in 1879.
This book is edited as a French Restoration era reflection on European thought in the 1420s. By examining the great works of a supposedly more humble and devout era, thinkers in this new French Catholic Church sought to distance themselves from the hated Pre-Revolutionary Catholic Church of recent memory. Lamennais's own life spanned some of the bloodiest times in French history, from the Revolution to the Restoration. “Anti-Clericalism” was a byword for “Revolutionary,” and 19th century France had such a revolution every couple of years. This edition was originally published in 1824.
The book was written in the 1420s by Thomas a Kempis, a modest German-born monk who became a copyist and a major thinker in Devotional Spiritualism. It has since enjoyed many editions and translations and is the world's second most translated religious book aside from The Bible. This is likely to be due to its place as required reading for Jesuits. Our copy, purchased in Paris, came with two unusual inserts: Small prayer cards of Notre-Dame de Grace and Ste Anne.
Inscribed on flyleaf. 320 pp. Some light stains and wear on the covers. Otherwise in very good condition. This book measures 4 1/16 H x 2 3/4 W x 3/4 D inches and weighs 4 ounces.