Note: Volney's _Ruins_

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The Last Man, Edited by Steven E. Jones

Volney's Ruins

This work, Les Ruines; ou, Mèditation sur les rèvolutions des empires (1791), by Constantin Francois Volney (1757-1820), was widely read, translated, and reprinted well into the nineteenth century. Its subject is outlined in the long title above; it should be added that it had a freethinking or skeptical bent, and its use of antique ruins as the site of a paradoxically nostalgic futurism influenced Percy Shelley, in works such as Queen Mab and "Ozymandias."

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Published @ RC

October 1997