“ANIMALS FEED, MEN NOURISH THEMSELVES; ONLY MEN OF DISTINCTION KNOW HOW TO EAT”
BRILLAT-SAVARIN, Anthelme. The Physiology of Taste. Philadelphia: Lindsay & Blakiston, 1854. Octavo, original blind- and gilt-stamped brown cloth, top edge gilt. $3500.
First edition in English of “the most famous book in gastronomy.”
"One of the most witty discussions on food ever written… The work is filled with entertaining anecdotes and commentary on good eating, including several pages of impressions about the United States" (Feret, 38). Brillat-Savarin fled to the United States after the Revolution, only to return to France in 1797 and secure an appointment to the Supreme Court of Appeal. While he held that post until he died, his greatest passions were exercised in his leisure time. Brillat-Savarin wrote extensive treatises on art, culture, science, and, of course, gastronomy. His appreciation for restaurants was virtually unparalleled and he was known for throwing elaborate dinner parties at his home in Paris. He was known for his tuna omelette, stuffed pheasant garnished with oranges, and fillet of beef with truffles. In 1825, just two months before his death, this work was published. It made him the most famous gastronomist of the day and he became known as the ultimate authority on food and dining. The initial 500 copies of the French first edition immediately sold out and the book has never been out of print since then. Includes histories of cooking, gourmands, coffee and chocolate, international specialties, a study of obesity, and more. With four pages of publisher's advertisements at rear. Reid, 75. Cagle & Stafford 103. Lowenstein 639. Bitting, 60. Contemporary bookplate of the Belles Lettres Society at Dickinson College, offsetting slightly onto facing page. Shelf label on spine.
Only light scattered foxing to text, small stain to front board, faint soiling to cloth, a bit of wear to extremities of binding. An extremely good copy.