Happy 190th Birthday Jules Verne

On February 8, 1828, Jules Gabriel Verne was born in Nantes, France and is the oldest of five children with one brother and three sisters.  His imagination for adventure and travel was sparked by the ships sailing in and out of the port in Nantes.  While at boarding school, Verne began to write short stories and poetry.  While his father wanted him to be a lawyer like himself, Verne wanted to write. 

He worked at the Théâtre Lyrique as the secretary from 1852 to 1854 while focusing on his writing.  Verne met his wife, Honorine, in 1856 and in 1857 they were married.  At the time that they met, Honorine was widowed with two daughters.  To take care of the family, Verne worked at the Paris Stock Market as a broker for several years.  While working as a broker, he continued to write and do research.  Honorine gave birth to their only child, Michel, in 1861. 

Verne met Pierre-Jules Hetzel in September 1862 and Hetzel agreed to publish Five Weeks in a Balloon in 1863 as part of Hetzel's Le Magasin d'éducation et de récréation.  The novel became an international bestseller.  Soon after, Verne and Hetzel entered into a long-term contract that lasted over 40 years and produced more than 60 works for Verne's series Voyages Extraordinaires.  

Verne passed away March 24, 1905, in Amiens, France at the age of 77.  

Jules Verne is the second most translated author right after Agatha Christie.  He wrote about science fiction, geography, astronomy, oceanography, exotic locations, and more in his plays, short stories, essays, poetry, and novels.  Verne wrote about a variety of innovations and technological advancements years before they were realities.  His largest body of work is the Voyages Extraordinaires, which is a series of 54 fiction and non-fiction novels published between 1863 and 1905.  His first play was The Broken Straws in 1850.  His first essay was "Portraits of Artists: XVIII" in 1857.  His first nonfiction book was with Théophile Lavallée entitled  Illustrated Geography of France and its Colonies in 1866-1868.  His first short story was "A Drama in Mexico" in 1851.  

There is a long list of things that he has written and some of his famous works are here at the library!

Jules Verne





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