Eleanor Marx’s translation of Lissagaray’s History was made from a manuscript revised by the author and approved by Karl Marx. Lissagaray himself regarded it as the definitive edition of his work. Editing has therefore been confined to a minimum, though some minor mis-translations from the original French have been corrected and a number of anachronistic terms, generally derived directly from the French, have been revised to make their meaning clearer. Other French terms recurring in the text are expanded in the glossary provided.
Lissagaray’s own appendices and notes, which contain valuable documentation of the events described, are reproduced in full.
Lissagaray’s own part in the Commune was modest; he followed its course as a journalist and a barricade fighter and was, as he tells us,‘neither member, nor officer, nor functionary of the Commune’.
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