[POULLET, -]. Nouvelles relations du Levant, qui contiennent plusieurs remarques…, touchant la Religion, les moeurs & la politique de divers Peuples…, Par Monsieur P. A., Paris, L. Billaine, MDCLXVII [=1667].
This is a characteristic travel account of the mid-17th century. Poullet, the author, states in his introduction that he wishes to please all readers, whom he classifies into two categories: the curious, that is, those who thirst for knowledge, and the pretentious, distinguished by intellectual vanity. The descriptions of his voyage to the East deal with many aspects of modern life, such as politics, religion, administration, costumes etc., whereas he seems uninterested in describing the cities he visited.
Poullet started out on his journey from Paris. He sailed out from Venice, crossed the Adriatic and toured the inland (Belgrade, Nis, Sophia, Plovdiv, Edirne), to reach Istanbul. While he borrows material for his descriptions from other works (for example, the parts on Lemnos and Mount Athos are taken from P. Belon's account), his illustrations include an extremely rare subject, not only for the time but for travel literature in general : the depiction of the bare interior and the exterior of an Ottoman house.
Written by Ioli Vingopoulou