[ORLEANS, DUC D' (1747-1793), His collection]. ARNAUD, François (1721-1784). Description des principales pierres gravées du cabinet de S.A.S. Monseigneur le duc d'Orléans. Paris: La Chau et Le Blond, 1780-84.
2 volumes, 2o (287 x 203 mm). Engraved allegorical portrait frontispiece and a headpiece after Charles Nicolas Cochin the Younger, 179 plates of cameos and intaglios, 7 plates of "medailles spintriennes," one headpiece and 56 tailpieces, all designed by Jacques-Gabriel de Saint-Aubin (except one tailpiece by Mme. E. de Sabran), all engraved by Saint-Aubin. (Some minor spotting.) Red straight-grained morocco gilt, sides with border of four roll-tools one comprising interlinked half ovals, urns and floral garlands, four double fillets, spine with pointillé decoration, floral roll-tool turn-ins, blue watered silk doublures and endleaves, gilt edges, stamp-signed by Lefebvre; quarter morocco folding cases. Provenance: Duke Albrecht of Saxe-Teschen (1738-1822, founder of the "Albertina," booklabel); Philip Hofer (bookplate); acquired from Ars Libri, 1983.
FIRST EDITION. A FINE COPY in a magnificent binding of this work on the famous gem collection of Louis Philippe Joseph, duc d'Orleans. The collection was bought by Catherine II of Russia in 1787 and is now in the Hermitage. This copy with the 7 PLATES OF "MEDAILLES SPINTRIENNES". Page 135/36 present in canceled and uncancelled state, the earlier state with an attack on Flaconet. "Jacques-Gabriel de Saint-Aubin drew and engraved nearly all plates and vignettes. With minute exactness he provided 179 representations of the gems themselves, and to these he added fifty-five tailpieces in which he set down the fancies to which these remnants of the past had given rise in his mind." (Ray). RARE: According to American Book Prices Current no complete copy with the "medailles spintriennes" has sold at auction in at least 35 years. Berlin Kat. 4276; Brunet III:727; Cicognara 2801; Cohen-de Ricci 542; Ray French 67; Vinet 1634.