Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Victor Hugo
‘Thought is the toil of the intelligence, revery its voluptuousness!’
(Victor Hugo, Les Misérables, Vol. 4, Book 2, Chapter 1)
The Montblanc Writers Editions
Throughout history, mankind has always shown a natural instinct to express its feelings, impressions and experiences in words. By committing these words to writing, we encourage history to evolve, culture to spread and civilisation to grow. Nowhere has this individual expression of the human spirit been more intriguingly revealed than in the great novels and tales of literature. Nowhere else have such fascinating stories been created, stories that have not only inspired generations but also shaped entire eras and cultural movements. This is why Montblanc - as a brand that is firmly anchored in writing culture - feels compelled by its entrepreneurial purpose and cultural duty to honour some of the most distinguished writers and authors of past times. With the Writers Edition, issued every year since 1992, Montblanc pays tribute to some of the greatest icons of literary history.
Poet, novelist, playwright - Victor Hugo (1802-1885) mastered many genres. He was an active intellectual, political philosopher, visionary and artist, whose work embodied the social upheavals of his time. Before reaching the age of 30, he founded the newspaper Le Conservateur littéraire, was made a Knight of the Legion of Honour and published the novel that made him famous: Notre-Dame de Paris. In 1841, he was elected to the Académie française, one of the oldest and most prestigious intellectual institutions in France. A philosopher who was also politically active, Victor Hugo did not always agree with the government. While in exile on Guernsey in 1862, he wrote the socially critical novel Les Misérables. This was one of his most comprehensive works and the one that positioned him as a social conscience of his time. The Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Hugo Limited Edition, made of black precious resin with platinum-coated fittings, is dedicated to this literary genius whose life and works shaped the French nation.
‘… a huge symphony in stone’: Notre-Dame de Paris
In 1831, just a few decades after the French Revolution, Victor Hugo dared to place a cathedral at the centre of his novel Notre-Dame de Paris. He was verbose in his praise of this majestic gothic construction with towering pointed arches and magnificent rose windows, depicting it
as a stone testament of a lost age. In Hugo's time, the cathedral had been left to decay after being stormed and plundered. His drama of love and jealousy played out in the shadow of this edifice. It is the story of the bell ringer Quasimodo, whose secret love of the gypsy Esmeralda is fulfilled only in death. Victor Hugo brings to life a colourful, multifaceted picture of the French capital at the end of the Middle Ages. The edition is inspired in many details by Victor Hugo's novel and by Notre-Dame. The cap is decorated with gothic arches in relief, and the end of the clip, which is shaped like the clapper of a bell, recalls the bell ringer Quasimodo and the bells of Notre-Dame. Victor Hugo's signature is engraved on the cap.
The writer who was an artist
Victor Hugo spent 15 years in exile on Guernsey. This was one of his most creatively productive periods, when he wrote Les Misérables as well as some poetry collections. During this time, he also had the leisure to allow his artistic talent to unfold. He turned Hauteville House, his home on Guernsey, into a work of art. He designed each room individually, placing in them tokens of his philosophy and his works. For example, the heads of Quasimodo and Esmeralda - the characters from his novel - could be found beneath the carved decorations of the wooden furniture. The materials he used for writing – brush, ink and pencil - he used equally for painting and drawing during this period. Over 3,500 pages of his artwork remain, mostly visionary watercolour landscapes and experimental works. The wood carvings in Hauteville House were the inspiration for the relief pattern on the barrel of this edition. The cone is decorated with an engraved trefoil frieze, which is also part of the architecture of Notre-Dame. The shape of the cone recalls the posts to which Quasimodo was chained.
A passionate plea for humanity: Les Misérables
Victor Hugo worked for a long time on his epic about the misery of the working masses, social injustice, humanity and morality. While in exile, he finally completed his passionate exhortation to a self-satisfied society. The five-part novel Les Misérables is the story of released galley prisoner Jean Valjean and his laborious search for a second chance in a world full of social grievances. The social upheavals of Hugo's time are reflected in Jean Valjean's own inner revolution. The main character from Les Misérables is immortalised on the cap of the Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Victor Hugo Limited Edition in a depiction based on a drawing by Gustave Brion. Jean Valjean's face, created as a 3D relief, looks through the open structure of the clip, which is inspired by the rose windows of Notre-Dame Cathedral. The line 'Chaque homme dans sa nuit s'en va vers sa lumière’ from Les Contemplations engraved on the cap top symbolises the idea of redemption. The cap top is also crowned by the Montblanc emblem in precious resin.
Involvement without limits
Victor Hugo's return from exile in 1871 was a triumphal procession. When he died in 1885, more than 2 million people massed at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris to honour not only a phenomenal figure of literature and art but also a statesman and citizen of the world - a man who thought with a European perspective, seeing beyond national constraints and the ideas of the time, and who planted an oak in his garden symbolising a united Europe. Victor Hugo's social involvement knew no limits. He called for peace and understanding and was an advocate for the disenfranchised and those with no hope of justice. The nib, handcrafted from Au 750 gold, refers to Victor Hugo's famous novel Notre-Dame de Paris with a fine engraving of a gargoyle - one of the cathedral's grotesque waterspouts.
诗人、小说家、剧作家——维克多·雨果（1802-1885）在多个领域大放异彩。他是一位活跃的知识分子、政治哲学家、具有远见的艺术家，他的作品体现了其所在时代的社会动荡。在他30岁之前,他创办了《保守文学》（*Le Conservateur littéraire*）报，被授予荣誉军团骑士头衔，并出版了让他闻名于世的小说：《巴黎圣母院》（*Notre-Dame de Paris*）。1841年，他被选为法国古老、颇负盛名的知识殿堂——法兰西学术院（Académie française）——
维克多·雨果在这部聚焦劳动人民苦难、社会不公、人性和道德的史诗之作中花费了巨大心血。在流亡期间，他终于完成了这部对一个自满社会的高声疾呼之作。由五部分组成的小说《悲惨世界》讲述了获释的囚犯冉阿让（Jean Valjean）以及他在一个充满对社会不满情绪的世界中寻找第二次机会的艰辛故事。雨果所在时代的社会动荡反映在冉阿让自己的内心革命中。《悲惨世界》的主角得以在万宝龙大文豪系列致敬维克多·雨果特别款书写工具的笔帽上获得新生。这幅画面以古斯塔夫·布里昂（Gustave Brion）的画作为蓝本。冉阿让的面庞以3D浮雕形式呈现，可以透过笔夹的开放式结构窥见，灵感来自巴黎圣母院的玫瑰窗。《静观集》（*Les Contemplations*）中的一句话＂Chaque homme dans sa nuit s＇en va vers salumière＂（夜里的人都会寻找光明）镌刻在笔帽顶端，象征着救赎。笔帽顶端同样镶嵌以珍贵树脂打造而成的万宝龙六角白星品牌标志。
维克多·雨果于1871年的流亡归来如同一场胜利游行。当他于1885年去世时，超过200万人聚集在巴黎凯旋门前，致敬这位文学和艺术大师、政治家和世界公民。他心怀欧洲，思想超越国界和时间的疆界，并在自已的花园里种植一颗橡树，象征着欧洲的统一。维克多·雨果积极投身社会奉献。 他呼吁和平与谅解，并且为被剥夺权利和没有正义希望之人高声疾呼。笔尖由750纯金手工制成，象征维克多·雨果闻名于世的小说 《巴黎圣母院》 。 笔尖上雕刻着一个石像鬼，灵感源自这座大教堂上风格奇异的出水口。