I was amusing myself, daydreaming some fifteen years ago, writing in an unknown corner that nothing defies man, and that one of these days it will come to pass that someone will present us with the daguerreotype of sound — the phonograph — something like a box within which melodies would be fixed and retained, the way the camera seizes and fixes images. To such an effect that a family, I imagine, finding itself prevented from attending the opening of a Force del destino or an Afrique, or whatever, would only have to delegate one of its members, armed with the phonograph in question, to go there. And upon his return: ‘How was the overture?’ ‘Like this!’ ‘Too fast?’ ‘There!’ ‘And the quintet?’ ‘Don’t you think the tenor screeches a bit?’
Do not laugh so fast! What I dreamed, me, ignorant man, man of imagination, a man of science discovered five or six years later…It was sound waves, recorded (graphed by the learned Mr. Lissajoux) – Harmony shown to be a science as rigorously exact as geometry!…
If I dream, let me dream again – I defy you to wake me up! Let me contemplate the air furrowed by aisles…Man rushes to all parts of the world, quick as electricity, and glides and descends like a bird to the desired place.