(Paris: Jean Henault, 1656). 164 x 109 mm. (6 1/2 x 4 1/4").  leaves. Fifth Edition.
Contemporary black morocco, covers with blind-stamped armorial device of the Buade family (three griffin legs, surmounted by a crown), raised bands, two silver metal clasps, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. ENGRAVED THROUGHOUT in calligraphic script with elaborate borders and images of Christ, the Virgin, and the Seven Deadly Sins, all by Moreau. Front pastedown with bookplate of Roger Paultre. Bonacini 1228 (1644 ed.); For the binding: Guigard II, 130. Joints and extremities minimally rubbed (and well masked with dye), fore margin of most leaves faintly thumbed (title page just slightly more so), lower right marginal corner of a dozen leaves with small, very weak dampstain, final page with adhesion at inner margin, other trivial defects, but still quite an appealing copy, the binding solid, lustrous, and scarcely worn, and the engraved text bright, smooth, and clean.
This is an especially charming engraved prayer book that belonged to a very prominent 17th century French family. Moreau (ca. 1600-48) was a calligrapher and writing-master who also published writing manuals. He designed a special cursive type called "lettres financières," which he dedicated to Louis XIII, who made him a printer-in-ordinary in 1643. The present item does not use his moveable type, but employs engraved prayers done on separate copperplates, which were then fitted with any one of 16 ornamental borders, featuring birds, mermaids, cherubs, fruits, and flowers. In addition to the borders, there are also a number of engravings of flowers or fruit, as well as images of saints, scenes from the life of Christ, royal arms, and portrayals of the Seven Deadly Sins personified (Envy is particularly powerful as a Medusa-like creature accompanied by a mangy dog). According to Guigard, this copy was bound with the arms of Antoine de Buade, Comte de Palluau, counsellor of state for Henri IV, and first steward of the royal household. He had a substantial library, but he died in 1633 (and his son Henri died in 1622), so this must have been bound for his grandson Louis de Buade, Comte de Frontenac et de Palluau (1625-98), who was known as a bibliophile himself and who served as Governor General of New France from 1672-82 and from 1689-98. Roger Paultre was both a collector and respected scholar of French emblem books and other illustrated works; his collection was sold in 1993 at Drouot. (ST12952)
Add to Cart Price: $5,500.00
PJP Catalog: 75.137