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Alchemy discussion forum > Alchemy texts > Alchemy Texts > "Les Souffleurs": a late-XVIIth c. satire by ...?

"Les Souffleurs": a late-XVIIth c. satire by ...?
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Carl Lavoie
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 Posted: Sat Jul 7th, 2012 06:13 am
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In a chapter regarding the survival of the supernatural through the channels of art and literature between the years 1680 and 1800, Roy Porter, of the Wellcome Institute, suggests that Laurent Bordelon, the author of Les Histoires des Imaginations Extravagantes de Monsieur Oufle that has a dozen of pages about alchemy, had also written fifteen years before the satirical play ‘Les Souffleurs, ou la Pierre philosophale d’Arlequin’ :

http://books.google.ca/books?id=I-jo4ma3TMEC&pg=PA247&lpg=PA247&dq=bordelon+souffleurs&source=bl&ots=B0up1TEwG9&sig=O7PO0ML6NpTA3ANUztLSQdKgnP4&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Q7b3T4KFAfLr0QGwv6H2Bg&ved=0CDQQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=bordelon%20souffleurs&f=false

The title-page (‘Amsterdam, 1695’), though, only gives: “Suivant la Copie de Paris.”

http://books.google.ca/books?id=yg1OAAAAcAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

... while the STC has it under Michel Chilliat:

http://picarta.pica.nl/xslt/DB=3.11//CMD?ACT=SRCHA&IKT=1004&SRT=YOP&REC=*&TRM=ppn%20850332869&COOKIE=U64873,KSTCNLogin,I20,B1996++++++,SY,NSTCN+default+login,D3.11,Ec0c689b2-9d3,A,H,R70.27.41.33,FY

Now, although the play was being performed in Paris as of 1693 ...

http://www.foires.univ-nantes.fr/pages/calendrier/cal1693.htm

... it is only the following year that the name of Michel Chilliat is associated with the production (notice that Bordelon had an ‘Arlequin’ and a ‘Scapin’ the same year) :

http://www.foires.univ-nantes.fr/pages/calendrier/cal1694.htm


Could the abbé Bordelon actually be the author of this satire? Is there a record of that somewhere?

Paul Ferguson
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 Posted: Sat Jul 7th, 2012 12:27 pm
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According to De Léris:

http://books.google.com/books?id=of05AAAAcAAJ&pg=PA309&lpg=PA309&dq=Souffleurs+%22H%C3%B4tel+de+Bourgogne%22&source=bl&ots=gvnJerX3uP&sig=cbFZTPjre0vbGVEp58qgyie7IAk&hl=fr&sa=X&ei=Qxn4T-B7xJWJB8zsteYG&ved=0CFMQ6AEwBTgU#v=onepage&q&f=false

and here also

http://books.google.com/books?id=h5F3tMq8K6YC&pg=PA523&dq=chilliac+souffleurs&hl=fr&sa=X&ei=Qhr4T4LNOsydiAeTtqnHBg&ved=0CC8Q6AEwADgK#v=onepage&q=chilliac%20souffleurs&f=false

...it was destined for the stage in 1693 (Théâtre-Italien) but never made it (I wonder why?) It was however printed and published in the following year. This would explain the 1693/4 confusion.

As to why Porter attributed it to Bordelon I do not know unless it was a simple confusion on his part with the Arlequin of Bordelon.

I also note in passing a much earlier (1617) ballet by the lutenist Charles Chevalier, 'Les Souffleurs d'alchimie':

http://books.google.com/books?id=2Qe6s9kWNuIC&pg=PA109&dq=%22charles+chevalier%22+souffleurs&hl=fr&sa=X&ei=whz4T5mxMcuUiQfD5ZDXBg&ved=0CDoQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=%22charles%20chevalier%22%20souffleurs&f=false

Carl Lavoie
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 Posted: Sun Jul 8th, 2012 05:57 am
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.
it was destined for the stage in 1693 (Théâtre-Italien) but never made it (I wonder why?)

Perhaps because it was, well, a wretched play.




-Anne Larue, « Théâtre et alchimie », in: Aspects de la tradition alchimique au XVIIe siècle. Textes et travaux de Chrysopœia no4, p. 269 (Paris/Milan, 1998).

____________
Note : Only "attributed" to Chilliat.
.

Last edited on Sun Jul 8th, 2012 05:58 am by Carl Lavoie


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