Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778)
La Botanique de J.J.Rousseau, orne de soixante-cinq planches, imprims en couleurs d'aprs les peintures de P.J.Redout. Paris: L.E. Herhan for Delachausse & Garnery, 1805. Large 2 (518 x 340mm). Half-title, title with large uncoloured stipple-engraved vignette, 65 STIPPLE-ENGRAVED PLATES, PRINTED IN COLOURS AND FINISHED BY HAND, AFTER REDOUT, by Bouquet, Jacques Chailly, Mlle. Delelo and others, printed by Langlois. (Small neat repair to lower outer corner of title and four subsequent leaves, small tears to blank margins of 6 plates, the final plate with light soiling to outer balnk marogin.) Contemporary French red straight-grained half morocco, the flat spine divided into six compartments by gilt fillets, lettered in gilt in the second (neatly rebacked and cornered, old spine laid down, some scuffing and light surface damage to paper of covers). Provenance: Bowdoin (signature on half-title).
FIRST ILLUSTRATED EDITION. A LARGE COPY OF THE FOLIO ISSUE, WITH THE PLATES IN THEIR MOST DESIRABLE STATE. One of a few copies with the plates in proof state, before the addition of names of the subjects in French (and the Latin binomials) as noted at the head of the Explication des Planches: 'Il a t quelques exemplaires imprim avant la lettre o la marque indicative des dtails ne se trouve pas'. This issue with text as follows: five preliminary leaves comprising title, half-title, 4pp. 'Explication des planches', 2pp. 'Renvois des mots du Dictionnaire', the text paginated to p.122.
"This work is Redout's last link with the ancien rgime: his old patrons had all died, or, like Cels, who died in 1806, had ceased to be influential. Redout had entered easily into a new life under the empire. On the whole, it can be said that it is remarkable how little Redout was affected by the political and social changes that took place around him" (Stafleu in Lawrence, Redouteana p.23). Rousseau had first published his Essais lmentaires sur le botanique in Paris in 1771. His interest had been aroused, in 1763 or 1764, by his enforced exile amongst the beauties of Switzerland. Following the current fashion he made various collections of plant specimens or herbaria, two of which are known to have been given to Madame tienne Delessert and her daughter Margurite-Madeleine. Great Flower Books (1990) p.134; cf. Lawrence Redouteana 15; Nissen BBI 1688; Pritzel 7824; Stafleu & Cowan 9688.