Schule der ländlichen Baukunst oder Anweisung feste Häuser von mehreren Stockwerken blos mit Erde … zu bauen, in einem getruen und vollständigen Auszug aus dem Französischen übersetzt. Mit einer Zugabe von dieser Bauart in Deutschland.
Nürnberg & Altdorf, J.C.Monath and J.F.Kussler 1793.
8vo. viii + 99 + (5)pp, 8 folding engraved plates. Contemporary marbled paper boards. Early nineteenth century ink ownership inscriptions of Gaetan d’Escuyer, Fribourg, Switzerland, on verso of front free endpaper and at top of title leaf. A good, fresh, clean copy.
An early translation into German of Cointeraux’s Ecole d’Architecture Rurale, published in four parts in Paris in 1790-1. François Cointeraux (1740-1830), a land surveyor turned architect originally based in Lyon, France, moved to Paris in 1788, and from then onwards issued a stream of publications advocating the use of pisé (rammed earth) in building construction and explaining the practicalities of building in this material. Although he achieved only modest success in his own architectural practice, his publications on pisé construction were quickly translated into seven European languages and gave rise to widespread experiments in the use of pisé by architects and builders outside France, particularly in England, Germany and Russia. The particular merit of this Nürnberg & Altdorf edition is that it includes an extensive appendix (pp 65-99), discussing recent German literature on pisé construction and describing in some detail a house built using pisé at Schwalheim, on the Hohenlohe-Langenburg family estates near Bad Nauheim in present-day Hesse. The identity of the author of this appendix, who was also evidently the volume’s translator, is not disclosed, but although a passage in the text of the appendix shows that a conjectural past identification of the translator as the famous Berlin-based architect David Gilly is incorrect, the individual concerned was obviously knowledgeable on architectural matters. The present copy carries the ownership inscription of a member of the D’Escuyer family from Fribourg in Switzerland, who, rather oddly, possessed a patent of nobility issued by King Stanislaus of Poland in 1791, not long before Poland’s disappearance as an independent state.The British Architectural Library only holds one of the four parts of the original edition of the Ecole d’Architecture Rurale (BAL Cat 671), and no copy of any foreign language translations of it or other publications by Cointeraux.