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French Decorative Bookbinding - Eighteenth Century

Louis Douceur - 1749
Nouvel abrégé chronologique de l'histoire de France.


compt 1

Comparative Diagram 1 - imprint model d-13 vs eBay 1749 Henault imprint



As mentioned on the first page of this examination of a 1749 Henault that was purchased on eBay, one of the first things that I noticed was that my Douceur type model d-13 did not match perfectly a siminar imprint found on the ebay binding. This is shown in Comparative Diagram 1. A search for this imprint in my limited collection of Douceur bindings, revealed that it is only found on bindings No. 54 and No. 90. which coincidentally we have been looking at previously.

compt 2

Comparative Diagram 2 - imprints from bindings No. 54 and 90 vs a similar ebay 1749 binding imprint.


Now after a closer examination in Comparative Diagram 2, we can see that the ebay example and the No. 54 example are probably the same while that from No. 90 is actually the d-13 model. This is a bit unsettling as we seem to have proved that all these bindings were probably decorated with Douceurs tools. This would suggest that he had two of these tools. I decided to search for other examples of this tool and while randomly searing through the BnF online digital binding examples I stumbled upon a binding that really gave me a shock


click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 3 - high resolution imprints from binding No. 90 vs BnF, RLR, B-178 examples
(click on this image to see an enlargement)


I found on the inside (doublure side) of the boards an elaborate dentelle with this very same imprint, on close examination of Comparative Diagram 3 you will notice that this BnF example carries some of the charactersitics of the ebay example it was not the d-13 model. It has the notch in the leaf shown at "a" and the petal shapes at "b" and the surrounding petals have more in common with the eBay example, obviously one was a copy of the other. However this is only a small part of the comparisons that can be made of imprints found in this BnF, RLR, B-178 binding.


click to enlarge

This remarkable binding in which we find imprint models similar to Douceur and particularly to Dubuisson and yet probably predates Dubuisson, remains a mystery to the BnF, they don't know who made it... here is a Google translation of what they have to say about it...


"Binding executed in Paris around 1740-1747 by an unidentified workshop for Christophe de Beaumont, Archbishop of Paris, whose armories are gilded on the front and back back of the binding. The dating is proposed before 1748 insofar as the gilded armorial block in the center of the plates does not include the cross of the order of the Holy Spirit, order in which Christophe de Beaumont was admitted on January 1, 1748. The volume then passed into the library of Antoine Le Clerc of Juigné, successor of Christophe de Beaumont as Archbishop of Paris. If this binding can not be, in the current state of research, nominally attributed to a particular workshop, one can nevertheless note the presence of many characteristic tools that are likely to contribute to the identification of bindings coming from the same workshop. These include the following, thistle (corners and edges of boards, back and inner dentelle), double pomegranate stem (idem), small cornucopia (head and tail, front board and back), two models of drawer handle (perimeter), rocaille cartridge (middle of small sides) or open crown."


... on another new page we are to look closely at this binding, this is not a Douceur or a Dubuisson. We don't have any idea so far who might have made this.


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see below links to previous work






Atelier I B 31/10/2014





Icons of the Renaissance 06/02/2014





Atelier au trefle 22/12/2014




Atelier Royal 1518 - 1524 09/11/2014





Unraveling G. D. Hobson's book on fanfares 27/11/2014





16c fanfare on eBay 23/11/2014




another Padeloup binding on eBay 07/12/2014


the last Padeloup fanfare?


Rare Padeloup binding on eBay 15/11/2014



Pierre-Paul Dubuisson's work attributed to Derone le jeune 23/10/2014 (unfinished work now finished)


Pierre-Paul Dubuisson's work attributed to Douceur 22/10/2014 (an under contruction page finished at last)


Louis-Marie Michon - the 1956 Disaster 19/10/2014 (an unfinished page finished at last)


Louis XII Dolphins motif 03/02/2014


Aristophanes Binder 1543 02/02/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - Atlas Catalan 12/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - Linacre bindings 05/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier c. 1500-1520


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - Chronology 16/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - Inventory - binding No. 29 19/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - Inventory - binding No. 39 19/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - The mysterious disappearance of François Tissard d'Amboise 23/01/2014


Atelier des reliures LOUIS XII - FRANÇOIS Ier - The Simon Vostre fiasco 18/01/2014


L'Atelier Simon Vostre 1486-1521 01/01/2014


L'Atelier de Pierre Roffet 1511-1533 - TOOL CATALOGUE 26/01/2014


L'Atelier de Pierre Roffet 1511-1533 27/12/2013


Pierre Roffet - fleur-de-lis binder 28/12/2013


Fleur-de-lis Binder 1525-1540 27/11/2013


Du Saix Master 02/12/2013


Atelier Étienne Roffet 1538-1549 12/12/2013


Atelier Jean Picard 1538-1547


Imitative Binder c.1540 15/12/2013


Salel Binder 1540 17/11/2013


Atelier Ruette 1606-1669 INVENTORY


Atelier Macé Ruette 1606-1644


Atelier du Maitre Doreur 1622-1638


Atelier Antoine Ruette 1638-1669


Atelier des Caumartin 1652-1715


Atelier de Charenton 1670-1685


Atelier Luc-Antoine Boyet 1685-1733


Atelier Antoine-Michel Padeloup. dit Le Jeune 1685-1758


Atelier Louis Douceur 1721-1769


Atelier Pierre-Paul Dubuisson 1746-1762


Atelier Nicolas-Denis Derome, dit Derome le Jeune 1761-1788


Atelier Jean-Pierre Jubert, 1771-1793?


Atelier MM binder, 1770-179-?





A word of Caution

Even experts are sometimes wrong, before you spend thousands on a book, please do your own research! Just because I say a certain binding can be attributed to le Maitre isn't any kind of guarantee, don't take my word for it, go a step further and get your own proof. In these pages I have provided you with a way of doing just that.

Virtual Bookings, created by L. A. Miller return to the Home page of VIRTUAL BOOKBINDINGS

l.a.miller@mail.pf