1898. First Edition . (Dreyfus, Alfred). Jeu de lAffaire Dreyfus et de la Vérité. Sceaux: E. Charaire, [circa 1898]. Folding cloth-hinged stiff boards, mounted with illustrated chromolithographic game surface. Measures 23-3/4 by 16-3/4 inches opened. $3000.Original game board, with game-squares containing portraits of the principal characters in the Dreyfus scandal, including Émile Zola, whose famous protest in the form of an open newspaper letter entitled JAccuse contributed to Dreyfus eventual pardon and release.Dreyfus court-martial, conviction, and final acquittal developed into a political event which had repercussions throughout France and the Jewish world (Bredin), and exposed anti-Semitism that was rampant in the French military. Dreyfus was accused in 1894 of attempting to transmit a secret military document to the military attaché of the German embassy in Paris, the charges against him stemming from anti-Semitism. Arrested and tried before a court-martial, Dreyfus was found guilty of treason, sentenced to life imprisonment and exiled to Devils Island. Public outcry led to the discovery of suppressed exculpatory evidence, a retrial and eventual pardon. The Dreyfus affair made a strong impact on the outlook of world Jewry and the atmosphere in their respective countries. Jews everywhere were shocked that the affair could take place in France, the homeland of liberty and the Great Revolution, and that hatred of the Jews could still prejudice the behavior of a considerable part of the French people, in particular when the Jewish victim was completely assimilated. This seemed to prove clearly that assimilation was no defense against anti-Semitism (Encyclopedia Judaica 6, 228). Without game pieces and dice. Only the lightest soiling to board surface, fragment of ribbon tie still in place. An extraordinary surviving artifact in near-fine condition. (Inventory #: 45185)
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