Print. Nouvelles decouvertes dans la lune, Faites par Sir John Herschel, dans son observatoire du cap de bonne-esperance, d'apres les dessins publies par le journal des Sciences d'Edinbourg (Edinburgh Journal of Science). / Lith. de Thierry Frères, n.d. [1788-1834/38?]. Lithograph, 27.3x28.3cm on sheet trimmed to 33x41cm. Fantasy idyll of lunar paradise - neoclassical repose, birds of paradise, animals and winged men dancing in harmonious groups. Satire on astronomical observation and popular beliefs as to life on the moon; possibly connected with or following a 'Moon hoax' perpetuated by the New York Sun in 1835. Sir John Herschel visited South Africa 1834-1838
French print by the Thierry bothers showing the appearance of the landscape and inhabitants of the Moon. These discoveries published in the New York Sun newspaper in 1835 were allegedly reported from the Edinburgh Journal of Science. It was said that the famous astronomer John Herschel had seen such sights from his observatory at the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa. Using a telescope of fantastic dimensions he was reported as observing all manner of plants and life on the lunar surface. The deception now called the, 'Great Moon Hoax' is thought to have been perpetrated Richard Adam Locke. An Englishman recently arrived in New York; his stunt was an attempt to increase the circulation of this ailing newspaper.