Les deux livres
Edmond Jabès
1912 to 1991
Jean Capdeville
1917 to 2011
Fata Morgana

The poet Edmond Jabès has written about reading and writing in near-allegorical terms. An example is Les deux livres, a collection of contemplations and Socratic dialogues in which a sage tells us that there were two books lying on his table: that of God and his own. He then says: 'God brought mine and I brought the other'. The line about poems, white pages, virginity and the voracious appetite of paper and book that defies every religion have been typeset with plenty of white spaces by La Charité in Montpellier for publisher Fata Morgana.



Title page with frontispiece: gouache by Jean Capdeville
Title pagewith frontispiece: gouacheby Jean Capdeville

Title pagewith frontispiece: gouacheby Jean Capdeville

Text by Edmond Jabès with gouache by Jean Capdeville
Textby Edmond Jabès with gouacheby Jean Capdeville

Textby Edmond Jabès with gouacheby Jean Capdeville

This well-known publisher has released a large number of bibliophile and regular editions as well as a number of series, including some with original photographs and gouaches. For this artists' book, of which only 30 copies were published, Jean Capdeville produced original paintings with paint and chalk in black and green. Half a month after the completion of the printing work (17 March), Jabès's text was also published in a trade edition by Gallimard:Un étranger avec, sous le bras, un livre de petit format (30 March 1989).

Bibliographical description

Description: Les deux livres / Edmond Jabès ; [peintures originales par] Jean Capdeville. - [Saint-Clément-la-Rivière] : Fata Morgana, 1989. - [23] p. : ill. ; 29 cm
Printer: Impr. de la Charité (Montpellier)
Edition: 30 copies
This copy: Number 28 of 30 on Arches (and not on Rives, as is stated in the colophon)
Note: Signed by Jean Capdeville
Bibliography: Bénézit 3-202
Shelfnumber: Koopm L 501



  • Jean Capdeville. Céret, Musée d'art moderne de Céret, 1988
  • Fata morgana, 1966-1993. Saint-Clément-la-Rivière, Fata Morgana, 1993
  • Roger Eliot Stoddard, Edmond Jabès in bibliography: A record of the printed books. 2nd ed., rev. and enlarged.Paris, Lettres modernes Minard, 2001