In the above diagram I have classified the Breviarium tools and as certain of these are not found in Esmerian's Table VII - L'ATELIER DES CAUMARTIN, I - vers 1652 and II - de 1685 à 1701, I have added these additional tools as numbers 15, 16, 17a, 17b, 18, 19, and the variants 6-2, 7-3, 8-2 and 8-3.
Tools from Esmerian example No. 43, Rabelais 1666
In this diagram I have classified the tools from Esmerian's Caumartin example No. 43, which is an inside cover (doublure) from the binding of a 1666 edition of Rabelais, this binding is thought to have been made around 1685. Here I show the actual imprints and the corresponding Esmerian type models, which can easily be distinguished by their clean outlines. The variants 6-2, 7-2 and 8-2 are not found on Table VII, note however that two of these variants are also found among the Breviarium tools.
Specimen Davis526 from the BLDB
Armed with these new imprint examples from the Atelier des Caumartin we can search for others in the BLDB. It seems that not very many people have even heard of l'atelier des Caumartin, in vain you can search the billions of web pages on the internet with google. The British Library Database of bookbindings does not list a single example, yet there are examples in the database, as I shall now demonstrate with a few examples, let us examine the tool imprints from the binding shown above, Davis526, the British Library appears to know very little about this binding, which seems rather odd considering it is a French binding that bears the Royal Coat of Arms of King James II and was in all probability made for him while he was exiled in France.
Comparative Diagram 1 - Tools from the BLDB specimen, Davis526 vs Esmerian Type Models.
This collection of Caumartin tools is a great find as it gives us actual specimens of Esmerian Type 7, 8, and 9 which up till now we did not have as well as examples of Type 5, 6, 12, 13a and 13b.
I have separated the tools shown above as they do not figure in Esmerian's Atelier des Caumartin tools, these have been used collectively to create a coat of arms. Probably an official coat of arms, especially a Royal one, would normally be made of a single block. We learn more about this interesting 'arms' when we examine another important Caumartin example found in the BLDB collection, specimen c67e7 (pictured below). Note also the semis of a small fleurs-de-lis tool that I have numbered as 24.
BLDB Specimen c67e7 - actual size (click to enlarge)
Unfortunately this binding is soiled and worn while the photo is not perfect either, the BLDB has another record of this specimen in which the photo is much clearer although dark, I have extracted the imprints from this....
In the comparative diagram below, I have matched classified imprint examples to those of the c67e7 BLDB specimen
Comparative Diagram 2 - Tool Imprints from BLDB specimen c67e7 vs classified imprints.
Comparative Diagram 3 - Tool 25.
I would like to present one more important Caumartin binding from the BLDB, specimen davis469, this binding bears the arms of Louis IV.
BLDB specimen Davis469 - shown at actual size, click to see a 300 dpi enlargement
Comparative Diagram 4 - Tool Imprints from BLDB specimen Davis469 vs classified imprints.
In Comparative Diagram 4, we see the addition of tools 34, 35 and 36. It may be that most of these bindings were executed in the latter part of the seventeenth century, by a binder with Royal connections, if not the Kings binder himself? On the next page we will look at another "Royal" Caumartin binding, one which may be a "key" to all the rest, click here to go to the next page.