Home Books Articles Shorter Pieces

Buy the book:


Around the World in 80 Days

William Butcher

OUP 1995


Reissued 1999

ISBN: 9780192837783

Revised Edition 2001


Abridged and serialised on BBC Radio, read by Robert Powell:

Read the script

Listen to:

episodes 1-3

episodes 4-6

episodes 7-8

episodes 9-10



Introduction and chs 1-3


An academic study of the translation


With the words ‘Here I am, gentlemen’, Phileas Fogg snatches a day from the jaws of time to make one of literature’s great entrances.

Fogg – stiff, repressed, English – assures the members of the exclusive Reform club that he will circumnavigate the world in eighty days. Together with an irrepressible Frenchman and an Indian beauty he slices through jungles and over snowbound passes, even across an entire isthmus – only to get back five minutes late. He confronts despair and suicide, but his Indian companion makes a new man of him, able to face even his club again.

Dr Butcher’s stylish new translation of Around the World in Eighty Days moves as fast and as brilliantly as Fogg’s epic journey. This edition also presents important discoveries about Verne’s manuscripts, sources and cultural references.


‘the best introduction that I know’, Count Piero Gondolo della Riva

‘excellent translations/critical editions . . . known internationally as a topnotch scholar . . . by far the best available’, Professor Arthur Evans, Science Fiction Studies

les premières éditions critiques dignes de ce nom . . . aucune édition française n'existe qui soit comparable . . .  travail exemplaire', BSJV, 2000

'des versions qui sont des modèles, tant pour la qualité de la langue que pour les notes et commentaires', Professor J Chesneaux, Jules Verne (2001), p. 288

'Recommended  . . . Especially useful for scholars', North American Jules Verne Society, 2004

'One of the best short essays that I've seen [on AWED]', Professor Arthur Evans

'Elegant', Daily Telegraph, 11 March 1995

'Excellente traduction', Revue Jules Verne, no. 1, 1996, p. 96

'William Butcher has done the most of any scholar writing in English to provide a context for Around the World in Eighty Days based on the new wave of French Verne scholarship', Gale Cengage Learning