Spécimen de la langue berbère.

Paris, Imprimerie lithographique Maulde et Renou, Racinet [1844(?)].

In-4 (355 x 220 mm), modern hardback.

Very rare French-Berber conversation guide published in small numbers during the conquest of Algeria.

Entirely lithographed, it is the work of orientalist and diplomat Jacques-Denis Delaporte (1777-1841), who had been an interpreter during the Egyptian Expedition and became consul in Tripoli, Tangiers and Algiers. This guide is dedicated to another orientalist and translator, Pierre Améee Jaubert (1779-1847).
The writings are transcribed in four ways, in French as well as in the Arabic alphabet, with word-by-word and phonetic transcriptions in French.

The book consists of three parts:
1) Dialogue on weather, seasons and atmosphere, e.g. What's the weather like today? . It's colder in Paris than in Algiers; The sun's beating down, the heat's killing me; I couldn't go out, all I could see was lightning.
2) Dialogue for a military expedition with a less cordial tone, e.g. Conduisez-nous. If you betray us, we'll cut off your head ; Aren't the Arabs lying in ambush along the road? ; How many men on foot and horseback does the enemy have? ; If they want to be our friends, we'll do them no harm.
3) Saby or filial devotion, Qasydah or poem in Amazygh, otherwise known as Chleux, Berber or Kabyle. This is a model of Berber poetry and its translation.

1 000


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