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幕末日本図絵

Le Japon illustré
HUMBERT, Aimé
Paris : 1870
アンベール 『幕末日本図絵』

  スイス時計協会会長のアンベールは、 1863年 (文久3) 日本市場開拓を目的とした修好通商条約の締結のため、 使節の団長として来日した。 この時の余暇を利用して、 当時の日本の風俗、 習慣などを観察してノートに書き綴り、 帰国後まとめあげて雑誌に連載した。 本書は、 それを2巻本として刊行されたもので、 E.バイヤールなど当時のフランスの画壇で有名な人達によって描かれた約450枚の挿絵は今日でも極めて評価の高いものである。

  Aimé Humbert (1819-1900) was born in a small village in the canton of Neuchatel in Switzerland. Financial hardship forced him to leave university without graduating. Later he played an important part in the rebellion against the king of Prussia, which led to the incorporation of his native canton into the Swiss confederacy in 1857. In the spring of 1863 Humbert arrived in Nagasaki at the head of a deputation of five representatives of the Swiss watch-making industry and others interested in opening trade with Japan.
  Humbert and his companions stayed in Japan for some ten months, during which time he made copious notes on diverse aspects of Japanese customs, history and religion. These notes form the base of the present work, and witness how the author strove to interpret an alien culture in a purely personal manner. They first appeared in serial form in the magazine Le tour du monde, subsequently appearing from the press of Hachette in Paris in the year 1870.

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