Estat present de l’eglise et de la colonie fracoise dans La Nouvelle France. Lettre de M. L’Eveque de Quebec. Jean Baptiste... SAINT VALLIER, Bishop of Quebec.
Estat present de l’eglise et de la colonie fracoise dans La Nouvelle France. Lettre de M. L’Eveque de Quebec
A Classic Ethnography Of French Canada
Paris, Robert Pepier, 1688.

Estat present de l’eglise et de la colonie fracoise dans La Nouvelle France. Lettre de M. L’Eveque de Quebec.

8vo. (2) ff., 267 (i.e. 268) pp. Bound in contemporary calf with gilt-stamped spine, somewhat worn; restoration to blank corners at pp. 35, 253-267; last leaf with minor restoration of several words of text. Generally good.

Rare first edition of an account of an early trip to Quebec by Saint Vallier, the second Bishop of the Province and immediate successor to Laval. Saint-Vallier visited the country in 1685—three years before his consecration as Bishop—in order to examine the state of the diocese. Lasting eighteen months, his itinerary included Quebec, all the parishes along the St. Lawrence and Montréal, and following inland rivers and lakes, eventually reached as far as Acadia. Upon his return he wrote a report in the form of a letter to a friend, giving a colorful account of various Indian tribes and their relations to French colonists. The work became a classic ethnography of French Canada, and was reprinted in 1856.

The copy offered here is highly unusual in containing an apparently unrecorded cancel of the first prefatory leaf, (A, i.e. A2) making several orthographic corrections and rectifying the omission of a word. The collation of our copy contains 1 leaf in addition to the copy described in the NUC or in the JCB copy. It finds a match only in the Church copy, where the additional leaf is explicitly described as a blank.

Although beginning his ecclesiastical career as almoner to Louis XIV, Saint Vallier (1653-1727) was more attracted to missionary work than the court of Versailles, and spent 42 years as Bishop of Quebec, writing the first catechism for French Canada.



* Church 707; JCB (2) II.1367; Sabin 38,506/66,978; Harisse, NF 159; Dictionary of Canadian Biography II:328-224; not in Lande.

Price: $5,500.00

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