Le colportage biblique dans la France rurale catholique de la Restauration à la fin du Second Empire

After 1815, biblical peddling in catholic rural France knows tentative beginnings with the help of British and Swiss Biblical societies. During the July monarchy, it enjoys a quick expansion thanks to the newly launched evangelical societies of France and of Geneva. Their openly proselyt action provokes angry reactions from the Catholic Church and its clergy.  The Roman Church is backed by the political power during the second Republic and even more during the authoritarian Empire. Besides, in the eighteen sixties and onward, biblical peddling tends to decline for economic as well as cultural reasons : lower priced books and newspapers, development of popular libraries, competition with new ideologies. The peddlar nevertheless, first to arrive ahead of the evangelist, had time enough to become a familiar and friendly figure in the country, offering to people anxious for intellectual independance, but still deeply religious, a road to emancipation.