Antoine de St Exupéry is from France, Lyon, my hometown. A lot of people do not know that he was a pioneering pilot. He is the one that actually developed the first air mail delivery to Africa (Dakar/ Senegal). The plot of “The Little Prince” was partly inspired by the crash which the writer miraculously survived. Indeed, on December 30th de Saint-Exupery crashed in the Libyan desert during his attempt to break the Paris-Saigon air race record.
He nearly died of dehydration and was lost in hallucinations when found by chance by a wandering Bedouin (desert nomad) with his mechanic-navigator, André Prévot, on the sands of the desert. Tellingly, the book begins with a pilot lost in the desert.
It is among the most beloved books of all time, one of those rare timeless philosophical tale for all. But what few realize is that Saint-Exupéry penned his masterwork not in Paris but in New York City and Long Island, where he arrived in 1940 after the Nazi invasion of France.
The statue of Saint-Exupéry with the Little Prince by his side can be found in Lyon on the Bellecour square.
In 1968, the Morgan Library in New York acquired the original manuscripts, which contain 30,000 words –– almost twice as many as those published in the book — and it also features the original watercolors.
The drawings are now covered in scribbled out words, cigarette burns and coffee stains, which makes them all the more endearing. But what makes these drawings truly extraordinary, in addition to the affective elements like the baobab and the rose, is that they embody the fox’s unforgettable line: “What is essential is invisible to the eye”.
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The translation I offer is staying as close as the French version so a French learner can easily identify the words, adjectives, verbs, adverbs used. This is called a Literal translation, direct translation or word-for-word translation. I noticed this helps tremendously my students in their journey to learn French.
If you want a pdf copy of the all book in French and a pdf copy of the translation with my method, contact me at: email@example.com -
Fast Reading Pronunciation guide:
Slow Reading Pronunciation guide:
Lorsque j'avais six ans j'ai vu, une fois, une magnifique image, dans un livre sur la Forêt Vierge qui s'appelait "Histoires Vécues". Ça représentait un serpent boa qui avalait un fauve. Voilà la copie du dessin:
When I was six years old I saw, once, a magnificent picture, in a book about the virgin forest called "True Stories". It represented a picture of a boa constrictor who was swallowing a wild animal. Here is a copy of the drawing:
Lorsque j'avais six ans (when I was six years /old/: when “I had” six years; avoir — to have) j'ai vu (I saw; voir), une fois (once: «one time»), une magnifique image (a magnificent picture), dans un livre sur la Forêt Vierge (in a book about the virgin forest; forêt, f — forest) qui s'appelait (/which was/ called) "Histoires Vécues (True Stories="Lived Stories)". Ça représentait (it = the picture represented) un serpent boa (a boa constrictor: «a boa snake») qui avalait un fauve (who was swallowing a predator). Voilà la copie du dessin (here is a copy of the drawing)
On disait dans le livre :"Les serpents boas avalent leur proie tout entière, sans la mâcher. Ensuite ils ne peuvent plus bouger et ils dorment pendant les six mois de leur digestion."
In the book it was said: "Boa constrictors swallow their prey whole, without chewing it. After that they are