(A composite volume of late seventeenth and early eighteenth century engravings of ornament)
(London), “sold by J.Nicholls in the Minories near Aldgate” nd (late seventeenth century) (the De Moelder engravings only)
Oblong folio. (14) engravings, including plates 1-6 of what was subsequently Suite N in Thomas Bowles’s A Compleat Book of Ornaments (see description above). Nineteenth century quarter morocco, marbled boards. All the engravings are trimmed to their plate marks and mounted on larger sheets of nineteenth century paper. Most of the engravings have old glue marks at their outer corners. From the Birmingham Assay Office Library (from which this volume has recently been de-accessioned), with their small oval ownership stamp at the foot of the front free endpaper but no other library markings).
The principal element in this volume is a group of six rare engravings of designs for ornamental decorative items, evidently to be executed in gold, silver or brass, engraved from his own drawings by the late seventeenth century designer Charles De Moelder. They correspond to plates 1-6 of Suite N in the collection of ornamental engravings put together by the London printseller Thomas Bowles in the late 1720s, but are in an earlier state, lettered N but without plate numbers, and with the imprint of the suite’s earlier publisher J.Nicholls on what would have been the first plate in the suite. They are trimmed to within their plate marks, with old glue marks at their outer corners, and each measure approx 140 x 272mm. Bound up in the same volume are eight other plates of ornament, all trimmed to within their plate marks and several with glue marks at their outer corners. Three of these are unsigned images of cartouche frames, probably by an English or French designer/engraver of the first quarter of the eighteenth century, each measuring approx 240 x 120mm (one with the central part of the cartouche cut out, although this could well have originally been blank anyway) ; one is an engraving of designs for ornamental friezes which carries the imprint of the French engraver Pierre Mariette, “Rue St Jacques a Lesperance”, and which measures 135 x21mm, with a small loss of engraved surface at one outer corner ; and two further plates of the same character and dimensions may derive from the same Mariette suite. The volume is completed by an engraving of uncertain origin showing four images of tall porcelain (?) vessels with female heads, arms, and multiple breasts, measuring 158 x 305mm, and by an engraving of designs for ornamental friezes, with the imprint “Lepotre inv. et sculp.”, measuring 210 x 285mm.