Mary Reynolds (1891-1950), compagne de Marcel Duchamp, a relié
un exemplaire de La Science de Dieu aujourd'hui déposé
Institute of Chicago.
La Science de dieu ou la création de l'homme:
The toad skins laid on both the front and back covers
are an obvious reference to the subject of evolution found in the
title of La Science de dieu. In true Surrealist fashion, however,
the book is not what it appears to be. Brisset was not referring
to physical evolution, but to the evolution of language.
The genus of toad that Reynolds used is Bufo, a common
variety with worldwide distribution. Reynolds used a variety of
alluring and unexpected skins, including ostrich and boa constrictor,
which were not difficult to obtain in the Paris of the 1920s and
1930s. In these toads, the flaps of skin behind each eye are glands
called parotids that secrete poison.