12 June 2009
PARIS 1571 -- BOUQUET, Simon (fl. second half 16th century) and others. Bref et sommaire recueil de ce qui a esté faict, & de l'ordre tenüe à la ioyeuse & triumphante Entrée de tres-puissant, tres-magnanime & tres-chrestien Prince Charles IX. de ce nom Roy de France, en sa bonne ville& cité de Paris ... Avec le couronnement de tres-haute, tres-illustre & tres-excellente Princesse Madame Elizabet d'Austriche son espouse ... et entrée de la dicte dame en icelle ville. Paris: Denis Du Pré for Olivier Codoré, 1572.
4o (232 x 159 mm). 4 parts in one volume, collation part I (King's entry): A-N4 O2, two woodcut plates (folded half-sheet inserted after H4, quarter-sheet after I4); part II (Queen's coronation): a-b4 c2; part III (Queen's entry): A-G4 (G4 blank); part IV (verse by ÉTIENNE PASQUIER, Au Roy congratulation de la paix): A-B4 C2 (C2 blank). With 15 full-page woodcut illustrations (8 in pt. I, 6 in pt. III), publisher's woodcut device of a herald on titles to pts. I and II. (Library-stamp erased from title-page.) Contemporary limp vellum. Provenance: Don Gillen San Climet (early inscription); H.P. Kraus (sold to Gourary 1963).
FIRST EDITION of one of the finest French fête books of the 16th century. Ghost issues have been invented for this book by Mortimer and other bibliographers: no copies on special or thick paper can be distinguished as opposed to unwashed and unpressed copies such as this one; three pages are recorded in what are two different states (this copy showing I2-3 with corrected settings and G3r in roman type). The city of Paris celebrated the recently concluded peace -- all too brief as it would turn out -- with separate entries for the Royal couple (CHARLES IX on 6 March, ELISABETH D'AUTRICHE because of illness some three weeks later) and the coronation of the Queen in the cathedral of Saint Denis. PIERRE DE RONSARD and JEAN DORAT, who both contributed verse to Bouquet's account, were entrusted with the conception of the arches and perspectives and other planning of the festivities. They appealed to a number of artists of the First School of Fontainebleau, including GERMAIN PILON for sculptures and NICCOLÒ DELL' ABBATE for painting.
The beautiful woodcut illustrations in this book were executed under the direction of OLIVIER CODORÉ, engraver of precious stones to the Queen, but modern opinion that he designed them and cut the blocks himself is based on a misreading of the privilege, and older attributions to JEAN COUSIN THE YOUNGER can therefore not be rejected out of hand. FINE COPY, COMPLETE WITH THE RARE FINAL PART. Adams C-1391; Berlin 2984; Brun pp. 79-80, 195-6; Fairfax Murray French 152; Harvard Mortimer French 205-06; Vinet 474.
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