27 November 2008
CAVOS, Albert. Reconstruction du grand théatre de Moscou, dit Petrovski. [Perestroennoe Bolshogo Teatra Moskvy, nazvannogo Petrovskii.] Paris: by Jules Claye, 1859.
2° (597 x 430mm). 20 plates, lithographed by Regamey and printed by Lemercier, 3 of these tinted lithographs after Sadovnikov. (Marginal dampstain just touching the caption, light soiling.) Contemporary green half sheep, gilt label on upper side (spine chipped and worn, corners worn, extremities rubbed, lacking front endpaper). Provenance: Vasilii Alekseevich Bil'basov (1837-1904; shelf label) -- Seminary for East European History at the University of Vienna (19th century stamp on the title and verso of some plates).
FIRST EDITION. From the collection of Vasilii Bil'basov, famed historian and editor of Golos, one of St. Petersburg most influential and popular newspapers in the mid-nineteenth century. Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre had suffered extensive damaged during a fire in 1853, and Albert Cavos was charged with the reconstruction. The large plates include 4 after Sadovnikov, 2 of these atmospheric tinted views of the theatre and its precinct at night. The upper cover bears an intriguing label lettered in gilt 'Souvenir du Couronnement de sa Majesté l'Empereur Alexandre II'. RARE: ABPC records no copy at auction in over 30 years.
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