Henry Vizetelly  

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Henry Richard Vizetelly (30 July 1820, London - 1 January 1894) was an English publisher. He started the publications Pictorial Times and Illustrated Times, wrote several books while working in Paris and Berlin as correspondent for the Illustrated London News, and in 1887 founded a publishing house in London, Vizetelly and Company.

In 1888 he was prosecuted for obscene libel for his translation of Zola's La Terre (The Earth), and was fined £100; and when he reissued Zola's works in 1889 he was again prosecuted, fined £200, and imprisoned for three months. (see Vizetelly trial)

Life and work

The son of a printer, he was early apprenticed as a wood engraver, and one of his first blocks was a portrait of Old Parr.

Encouraged by the success of the Illustrated London News, Vizetelly in 1843; with his brother James Thomas Vizetelly (1817-1897) and Andrew Spottiswoode (1787-1866), started the Pictorial Times, which was published successfully for several years. In 1855, in partnership with David Bogue (1812-1856), he started a three-penny paper called the Illustrated Times, which four years later was merged in the Penny Illustrated Paper.

In 1865 Vizetelly became Paris correspondent for the Illustrated London News. During the years he remained in Paris he published several books: Paris in Peril (1882), The Story of the Diamond Necklace (1867) and a free translation of Marius Topin's L'homme au masque de fer (1870) under the title The Man in the Iron Mask.

In 1872 he was transferred to Berlin, where he wrote Berlin under the New Empire (1879). In 1887 he established a publishing house in London, issuing numerous translations of French and Russian authors. In 1888 he was prosecuted for obscene libel for his translation of Zola's La Terre (The Earth), and was fined £100; and when he reissued Zola's works in 1889 he was again prosecuted, fined £200, and imprisoned for three months. (see Vizetelly trial)

In 1893 he wrote a volume of autobiographical reminiscence called Glances Back through Seventy Years, a graphic picture of literary Bohemia in Paris and London between 1840 and 1870. He died on 1 January 1894 at "Heatherlands", Tilford, near Farnham in Surrey.

Henry Vizetelly's interest in wines led to the creation of two books. The Wines of the World Characterized & Classed: with some particulars respecting the beers of Europe was published in 1875 and Facts About Champagne and Other Sparkling Wines Collected During Numerous Visits to the Champagne and Other Viticultural Districts of France, and the Principal Remaining Wine-Producing Countries of Europe was published in 1879. He was Wine Juror for Great Britain at the Vienna and Paris Exhibitions of 1873 and 1878.

His younger brother, Frank Vizetelly (1830-1883), was a clever artist and journalist; he went to Egypt as war correspondent for the Illustrated London News and was never heard of after the massacre of Hicks Pasha's army in Kordofan. His son, Ernest Alfred Vizetelly, reworked some of his father's Zola translations and published these bowdlerized versions in the 1890s.

References

  • According to the French Wikipedia article on The man in the Iron Mask, Marius Topin's book proposed the identity of the man as Comte Ercole Mattioli (or Antoine-Hercule Matthioli), formerly a minister of the Mantuan Government of Charles IV di Gonzago.
  • Censorship in the United Kingdom






Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Henry Vizetelly" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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