Verrien, (Nicolas)

Recueil d’emblêmes, devises, medailles, et figures hieroglyphiques, au nombre de plus de de douze cent, avec leurs explications. Accompagné de plus de deux mille chiffres fleuronnez … avec les tenants, supports, & cimiers servant aux ornemens des armes.

Paris, Claude Jombert 1724.

Reference: 09924
Price: £840 [convert currency]

Full Description

8vo. 3 parts in 1. Engraved portrait frontispiece, printed title leaf, 62 + 16 + 24pp, 3 engraved part title leaves, 62 + (154) (numbered 1-153 and 20bis) + 17 engraved plates (of which all but two are printed with accompanying plates on their versos). The volume also contains, bound in after the first plate numbered 62, two further leaves, of which the first leaf carries on its recto an earlier engraved title leaf, with the imprint of Jean Jombert, and on its verso a pictorial view ; while the second leaf carries a two-page engraved dedication by Verrien to the Dauphin, Louis XIV’s son, likewise a survival from an earlier edition of the volume. Contemporary full mottled calf, gilt spine.

A scarce volume providing a very substantial selection of engraved emblems and cyphers by the French engraver Nicolas Verrien (or Vérien). The volume is described on its title leaf as being “très utile aux graveurs, peintres, sculpteurs, orfevres, brodeurs, serruriers, & à tous ceux qui travaillent au dessein”, as indeed it doubtless was, and a particularly useful feature is the provision of text identifying the emblems and providing suitable accompanying mottoes in Latin and French translation. A group of plates at the end, of a more ambitious visual character, offer intriguing designs suggesting how to use animals, birds and insects as supporters of armorial bearings. The volume’s frontispiece is an engraved portrait of Verrien dated 1685, and it is clear that the present edition is a reissue of earlier editions dating from the end of the seventeenth century, for the volume also includes what are evidently the engraved title leaf and engraved dedication leaf of an edition of this period carrying the imprint of an earlier member of the Jombert family. The present edition is nonetheless well worth having, for it was the only edition of the title recorded by Guilmard (on the basis of the copy of the book that was later lot 342 in the Foulc sale, 1914), and earlier editions issued in 1685 and 1696 are very much rarer and seem to have contained less accompanying text. Berlin Cat 5308 (1685 edition).

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