3 June 2009
DENON, Dominique Vivant, Baron de (1747-1825). Voyage dans la Basse et la Haute Égypte. Paris: Pierre Didot l'âiné, 1802.
2 volumes, broadsheet 2° (657 x 485mm). With half-titles. 142 plates of engravings of which 8 are double-page. (Occasional light browning or light spotting.) Contemporary diced russia by Ph. Selenka with his ticket, sides panelled in gilt and blind with a gilt foliate border, green sprinkled edges (spines lightly and evenly faded, extremities lightly rubbed).
FIRST EDITION. A VERY GOOD COPY IN A FINE BINDING BY SELENKA. 'DENON WAS THE FIRST TO REVEAL THE RICHNESS OF EGYPTIAN ART TO EUROPE' (Blackmer). Denon followed in Napoleon's footsteps on the expedition to Egypt, but published his influential and richly illustrated account a few years ahead of the famous Description (1809-1830). His fine engravings presented the country's riches to an eager audience, and had a substantial, early impact on the decorative arts of the day. Denon's Voyage was immediately successful, with smaller format editions and an English translation published before the year was out. The Blackmer collection held only the second edition of this work. RIBA 841; Brunet II, 599; Monglond V, 1192-1198; cf. Blackmer 471. (2)
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