A Voyage to the Moon by Cyrano de Bergerac, 1899 edition by Doubleday and McClure Co., Courtesy of Internet Archive



From 1899 edition by Doubleday and McClure Co.



Here's how Daniel Marty summarizes Cyrano de Bergerac's literary prediction of the phonograph as invented by Moonmen and described in Bergerac's Voyage to the Moon (published posthumously in 1657). The following comes from page 10 of Daniel Marty's The Illustrated History of Phonographs. (1)

"Cyrano de Bergerac (1620-1655) imagined a machine not unlike a clock, but capable of storing words. This ancestor of the phonograph is described in this L'Histoire comique des Etats et Empires de la Lune (1650). Cyrano de Bergerac describes a box full of springs and things from which issued 'distinct and different sounds which with the great Moonmen do duty as a language'. A remarkable piece of seventeenth century technologie -- but then Cyrano had already invented means of flying to the moon..."



The following description of the "Strange and Wonderful Book...made wholly for the ears and not the eyes" was extracted from pages 195-197 of the 1899 Doubleday and McClure Co. edition, translated by Archibald Lovell with Curtis Hidden Page as editor.







Voyages to the Moon and the Sun by Cyrano de Bergerac, Translated by Richard Aldington

George Routledge and Sons Ltd., London

The text used for the translation is that printed by M. Lachévre in his Giuvres Libertines de Cyrano de Bergerac, 2 vols., Champion, Paris, 1921. pp. 146-147