Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)MS529
TitleJournal of a visit to Paris
Extent1 volume
DescriptionA journal of an unknown author but most likely kept by the son of the Smith family describing their six week stay in Parisduring the summer of 1824. The writer records in detail the sites and attractions of Paris in the post Napoleonic era, often comparing life in the city with that of London. He includes interesting information about relative prices of goods and services and bureaucratic procedures relating to passports. His interest in the arts and sciences is evident in his efforts to obtain the required permissions to access certain buildings and collections, and then lists in his journal many of the works of art on display. Such a letter of permission from the authorities of the Conservatoire Royale du Arts and Metiers addressed to Madame Smith is enclosed in the journal. During their stay the family also visit Versailles, St Cloud, the Sevres porcelain manufactory and horse racing course at Champs de Mars. The journal clearly shows that the writer was determined to observe and learn as much as possible about life in Paris as nearly every day of his stay is taken up with visits to places of interest or enjoying the attractions of the city. It also reveals his curiosity for new innovation and technology which he observes in France and Paris in particular. He also records being present at public appearances by king Louis XVIII in the weeks before his death in 1824. In many respects, therefore, this journal is a particularly interesting source of information about life and culture in Paris in the years following the Napoleonic regime.
Access ConditionsAccess to all registered readers
Finding AidsA catalogue of this collection is available on the online archive catalogue. Click on the Finding Number to display the summary contents list of the catalogue and to view the full catalogue. A paper copy of this catalogue is also available for consultation at Special Collections.
Access StatusOpen
Custodial HistoryFormer location: MSS 6/vi/17
Reported in the University Librarian's Annual Report 1966/1967