logo-xls

French Decorative Bookbinding - Eighteenth Century

Louis Douceur - 1756 BREVIAIRE


click to enlarge

click to enlarge

The binding shown above is found in the Catalogue de reliures du XVe au XIXe siècle, en vente à la librairie Gumuchian & Cie. [Belles Reliures, Catalogue XII.] Published by Gumuchian & Cie. [1929], Paris, 1929. This large folio sized catalogue, is as good as you can get for high quality reproductions, possibly printed with heliogravure techniques. An invaluable reference about which I cannot say enough. You can click on the image to enlarge to 300dpi without any image loss. Now that we are hot on the trail of Douceur bindings I have looked again at this binding which is a bit mysterious, The catalogue notes, refer to this as a possible Douceur, however they mention small bird imprints and I do not see any, but then they also mention a tortillion border, which is the spiral form outer edge gilding. So I have to think this is the right binding. This has to be a binding made after 1756, and could be then quite different from the bindings made 10 years earlier. I decided to catalogue all the tools on this binding to see where they lead us.

click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 1 - imprints from binding No. 210
(click on this image to see a 300dpi enlargement)


in my old collection of Douceur imprints (click here to see them), I only find one that I can possibly identify in this 1756 binding, shown as d-8, however now that I have looked through Barber's collection of imprints I find that his FL 157 is a perfect match, he notes this imprint as deriving from a Douceur binding.

157ref

However as this binding is from 1756 or later it may not help us looking for Douceurs tools of 1749. I discovered another binding with one of these tools, in my collection of higher than normal resolution binding images, No. 923, this same binding recently appeared in a Sotheby's Auction in 2014


click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 1 - Sotheby's 2014 vs No. 923 (old catelogue)
(click on this image to see a 300dpi enlargement)


click to enlarge

This binding could have appeared after 1750 and has been attributed by Sotheby's experts to Padeloup, on the basis that this binding came from the collection of Robert Hoe who claimed it was a Padeloup! Personally I do not see a single Padeloup tool used in the decoration of this binding. However when I tested one of the tools against those found in the binding shown at the top of this page, 1756 Breviaire, I found a perfect match. This is shown in Comparative Diagram 2 below. This imprint is so irregular that the slightest difference would show up immediately.


overlay

Comparative Diagram 2 - No. 210 imprint vs No 923 imprint overlay.


click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 3 - No. 923 imprints
(click on this image to see a 300dpi enlargement).


A quick look at the No. 923 imprints reveals that this binding was decorated with only a handfull of tools. They are very distinctive however and I soon found another binding with the same tools in the same Sotheby's sale.


click to enlarge

click to enlarge

Now you only have to look at Sotheby's enlargement of this 1754 Lucrèce, you realize that this binding was made by the same binder as the 1750 Virgile (lot 230) and probably in the same year the work is so similar. Yet the Sotheby's experts make no mention of Padeloup, strange no? Now here is where the plot thickens, when i saw this binding it seemed to me that i have seen before this corner tool and sure enough it appears on another binding in my high resolution collection, No. 1105, a binding that I previously marked "Douceur?"


cmpt
Comparative Diagram 4 - No. 1105 corner imprint vs Sotheby's 156 imprint.






click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 5 - No. 1105
(click on this image to see a 300dpi enlargement)


When I was looking for clues in Barber's imprint catalogue, I decided to try and locate the imprints that corresponded to the ones that he listed as being found on Douceur's "signed" bindings. He gives us a list of the imprints he found on them, too bad he didn't just show us a photo of each one of these signed bindings, I am sure it would have made our work a lot easier, but maybe not as much fun. I noticed on binding No. 1105 an imprint that looked a lot like DCT 53, when I put them both together at the same scale, even though Barber's model isn't very sharp, there was no doubt that this is the same imprint! This is a huge discovery, the same imprint from a signed Douceur binding is found on No. 1105.


click to enlarge
Comparative Diagram 6 - No. 1105 imprint vs DCT 53
(click on this image to see a 300dpi enlargement)





click to enlarge






At this point of time I was lamenting the fact that I could not locate my references for No. 1105 an obviously important key to the puzzle. Then as if by a miracle of coincidence I noticed that the title of Lot 156, was the same as that of No. 1105, even though you could only see part of the title, you know this has to be the same one, the very same book by the very same binder, even the edge roll is the same. This can be seen in Comparative Diagram 7, shown below.



click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 7 - lot 156 title compartment vs No. 1105 title compartment,
(click on this image to see an enlargement)


Looking through my old files I found yet another Lucrèce with the same corner imprint as the others, this binding is starting to look like the classic Douceur bindings that I have already covered on another page and not surprisingly they are all copies of the 1754 Lucrèce (click here to see this page).



click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 8 - another Lucrèce example,
Christie's sale 5071, 8 November 2014 Paris, lot 143.
(click on this image to see an enlargement)


click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 9 - third Lucrèce title compartment vs lot 156 title compartments,
(click on this image to see an enlargement)


click to enlarge

Comparative Diagram 10 - Lucrèce corners
(click on this image to see an enlargement)


lucrece-4 text

lucrece-4 text

Now I have just found another one (shown above) in an online auction catelogue, here we are getting lucky on this binding, which cannot be enlarged but we can see anyway, the same corner imprint, the DCT 53 imprint, and the wreath, shown in Comparative Diagram 2. Confirming the status of all these bindings. In the auction details they have attributed this binding to Douceur which is normal as everyone seems to recognize this type of Douceur. They list further examples that we will try to track down on the next page.




click here to see the next page




click here to return to the INDEX of new (2017) pages.


click here to return to the HOME page.




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