|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.|
|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|
|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.|
|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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|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.|
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