I want to say to you, read the book, the Pearl of Great Price, and read the Book of Abraham. The Pearl of Great Price I hold to be one of the most intelligent, one of the most religious books that the world has ever had; but more than that, to me the Pearl of Great Price is true in its name. It contains an ideal of life that is higher and grander and more glorious than I think is found in the pages of any other book unless it be the Holy Bible. It behooves us to read these things, understand them: and I thank God when they are attacked, because it brings to me, after a study and thought, back to the fact that what God has given He has given, and He has nothing to retract." - Levi Edgar Young, Conference Report (April 1913), 74

"...it must be evident to all who seriously consider the matter, that if the Book of Abraham as given to us by Joseph Smith be true, it must have been translated by a greater than human power." - George Reynolds, The Book of Abraham: Its Authenticity Established as a Divine and Ancient Record (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1879), 4

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Jules Remy - Voyage Au Pays Des Mormons

As related by Elder George Reynolds in the Millennial Star in 1879, Jules Remy and Julius Brenchley visited Utah in 1855. On their return home to Paris, France, they brought with them a copy of The Book of Abraham, "which they placed in the hands of "a young savant of the Museum of the Louvre, M. Theodule Deveria," with the request that he would translate it. This he attempted to do. Messrs. Remy and Brenchley [sic] afterwards published an account of their travels, and embodied therein M. Deveria's soi-disant translation."1 This translation of the facsimiles into French was published by Jules Remy in 1860 in Paris, France, being his second volume relating to his "Journey to the Land of the Mormons." The next year an English addition appeared in print, "scrupulously revised," and retitled, A Journey to Great Salt Lake City.2

The first LDS response to this French publication came from Louis Bertrand, while serving as the Mission President over France. Bertrand was converted to the Gospel through John Taylor, and Bertrand substantially assisted Elder Taylor in translating the Book of Mormon into French.  Bertrand's response to Remy was included in his book entitled Memoire's D'un Mormon [Memoirs of a Mormon], published in Paris, France, in 1862. 

The extent of Remy's publication seems to have had limited circulation among the Latter-day Saints because this issue wasn't addressed again in print until George Reynold's response was published in 1879, six years following T.B.H. Stenhouse's publication of The Rocky Mountain Saints.3 Stenhouse plagiarized Remy's book by reproducing Deveria's translation of the Book of Abraham facsimiles which he then compared with Joseph Smith's explanations of the same.

The original publication of Remy's book in French is available below.  No translation is attempted, however, since the English version is also available online.

1 George Reynolds, "The Book of Abraham--Its Genuineness Established [Continued]," The Latter-Day Saints' Millennial Star, 41/13 (March 31, 1879): 193
2 "A Visit to the Mormons," The Westminster Review: July and October 1861 (New Series Vol. XX; London: George Manwaring, 1861), 76:360
3 T.B.H. Stenshouse, The Rocky Mountain Saints: A Full and Complete History of the Mormons (New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1873), 507-522

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