Bibliothèque de la Pléiade

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The Bibliothèque de la Pléiade is a series of books published by the French publisher Gallimard since 1931.

The characteristic spines of the Bibliothèque de la Pléiade

Selection of works and authors

The Pléiade includes editions of works of classics from world literature , with a focus on French literature . Each volume is an edition of a work by an outstanding author that has been prepared under strict edition guidelines; in the appendix there is a critical apparatus and detailed registers. The Pléiade enjoys an extraordinarily high level of prestige in the French literary landscape: to be accepted into it while it was still alive is considered a great honor that has so far been given to 18 authors, namely René Char , Paul Claudel , André Gide , Julien Gracq , Julien Green , Eugène Ionesco , Claude Lévi-Strauss , André Malraux , Roger Martin du Gard , Henry de Montherlant , Nathalie Sarraute , Saint-John Perse , Marguerite Yourcenar , Jean d'Ormesson , Philippe Jaccottet , Milan Kundera , Mario Vargas Llosa and Philip Roth .

Frequency of publication and features

Over 560 volumes had appeared by 2010; eleven volumes are currently published each year. The small-format (105 × 170 mm) volumes are very elaborately designed with wood-free 36-gram thin printing paper and, depending on the century, different-colored sheepskin covers with gold embossing. A Pléiade band costs between 50 and 75 euros. 67 volumes are illustrated and 16 are bilingual. They are popular collectibles.


The predecessors of the “Bibliothèque” were the “Éditions de la Pléiade” by the Russian-Swiss publisher Jacques Schiffrin, published in Paris since 1922. The name "Pléiade" referred to a group of classical Russian poets, as Schiffrin's son communicates in his memoirs. He states 1933 as the year of the handover to Gallimard.

Name origin

The name Pléiade is reminiscent of the French poets' association La Pléiade , which was formed in 1549 in Paris around Pierre de Ronsard and Joachim du Bellay . The poets' union named itself after the Pleiades , the "seven stars", because it always had seven members.

See also


  • André Schiffrin: Paris, New York and back. Political apprenticeship of a publisher. From the American English by Andrea Marenzeller. Matthes & Seitz, Berlin 2010, ISBN 978-3-88221-685-1 . (Original title: A political education ).

Web links

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