top of page

Published by The Folio Society, London, 1972. With seven illustrations or litographs by Charles Mozley. Original hardcover with gilt lettering on spine and ornaments to boards. Excellent condition with only minor signs of external wear.


This edition is translated and with an introduction Leonard Tancoc. The Nun (or Memoirs of a Nun, French: La Religieuse) is an 18th-century French novel by Denis Diderot. Completed in about 1780, the work was not published until 1796, after Diderot's death. The novel began not as a work for literary consumption, but as an elaborate practical joke aimed at luring the Marquis de Croismare, a companion of Diderot's, back to Paris.


The novel consists of a series of letters purporting to be from a nun, Suzanne, who implores the Marquis to help her in renouncing her vows, and describes her intolerable life in the convent to which she has been committed against her will. Diderot later revised the letters into a novel drawing attention both to the then-current practice of forcing young women into convents in order to get them out of the way, and the corruption that was supposedly rampant among the clergy and in religious institutions. When Diderot publicly admitted his role in the ruse, the Marquis is said to have laughed at the revelation, unsurprisingly since he had behaved with exemplary compassion and generosity in his willingness to help the imaginary Suzanne.

The Nun by Denis Diderot

Out of Stock
  • If you wish to return your purchase, please do so within five working days of receiving the book and in the condition upon which it was sold. Please contact us to let us know the reason why you wish to return it. 

bottom of page