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Folded fruits.

Jerome Marot

Well-known member
You certainly know about the fruits of the dandelion plant, which are dispersed by wind. They were used as an illustration to a famous French dictionary:

Nouveau Larousse illustré 1897-1904

Larousse / Public domain /Wikipedia

The fruit i topped by a kind of umbrella, which allows it to fly Marry Poppins style. But I did not realise until today that this umbrella is sensitive to rain and folds when wet:




The fruits unfold when the weather improves. The 3 pictures were actually taken in reverse order.

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
I didn’t know there was an illustrated version! This is a treasure!

I had one, in English, but was surprised how it referenced Jews and Hitler! I have always had such a feeling of revulsion to that very useful little book!

So to see the vintage version was an abrupt emotional awakening that shook me to the core. I had totally forgotten it’s existence.

Your lovely vintage copy is a much gentler side of Larousse and such a pleasant eye-opener! I also looked at the latest online modern Larousse and it is again so refreshingly updated!

I will seek an old edition just like yours!


Jerome Marot

Well-known member
I didn’t know there was an illustrated version!

All versions of that dictionary are "illustrated", meaning there are 20 pages or so with figures. This is also true today.

I had not thought it referenced "Jews and Hitler" as you wrote. I have a version from the 50s in France, I will look it up. But dictionaries and encyclopaedias are always politically charged. The original Encyclopédie was suppressed (1759) and several of the editors sent to jail or exile.

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
I have put in a bid for a copy of an early edition in French!

it will be a pleasure for me to re-imagine this treasure of a publication!