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French Decorative Bookbinding - Eighteenth Century

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Office de la Semaine Sainte in French and Latin, In-8 (19.9 x 13.4 cm.) maroquin rouge, with the arms of Marie Leczinska (Leszczyska), wife of Louis XV, stamped on both covers. "Aux armes de Marie LECZINSKA (1703-1768) seconde fille de Stanislas LECZINSKI, roi de Pologne, épouse de Louis XV et reine de France en 1725".

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The title page is missing from this book, however there are a number of clues that may help us to identify this edition. The most important of these are three full page engravings by J. B. Scotin. Jean-Baptiste Scotin, born in 1678 came from a family of engravers of which the most important members were his father Gérard Scotin I (b 1643), his brother, Gérard-Jean-Baptiste Scotin (1671‚1716), Gérard Scotin II (b Paris, 13 Sept 1698; d after 1755) and also FranÁois-Gérard (b 1703) and Louis-François (d 1769).

A search of his name in relation to the Office de la Semaine Sainte engravings seems to indicate that a number of publishers produced works that included J. B. Scotin engravings. The most popular appears to be a 1728 Paris edition Chez la Veuve Mazieres, & Jean-Baptiste Garnier. This edition is said to have The title-leaf and three plates, engraved by J.B. Scotin


page 20-21


detail


J. Scotin sculp


This engraving has been signed J. Scotin Sculp, the other two engraving are signed J. B. Scotin Sculp.


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resurection


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While it would be nice to identify the edition of this publication, it would be even more exciting to identify the binder, I have not found any other examples of this particular "dentelle". While the roll which accompanies it is an almost identical example of a roll used by Boyet. It copies exactly the size and form but lacks a small embellishing detail which can only be spotted under magnification. My guess is that who ever made this tool probably also made the Boyet tool.

enlarged dentelle



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Comparative Diagram 1 - Outer Roll from the Leczinska binding vs a similar Luc-Antoine Boyet Roll

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Equally important in our search to identify this binder will be this inner Roll.

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Another important clue is the presence of brokatpapier paste-downs, this decorative, gilt embossed paper foil was not made in France but imported from Germany.


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On the front paste-down a ticket has been covered with another plain unmarked ticket to hide the inscription on the first, which however, is still faintly visible. A series of photo enhancement processes reveals the hidden script.


photo enhanced




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