Surviving in amazing condition, this ladies almanac was published in 1819. One of the first “gender publications”, it presented art, music, poetry and historical stories in a small, pocket sized format. (Ladies dresses and skirts always had pockets for tucking small books and handkerchiefs). The book was published by Delannay Librairie Palais Royale in Paris.
These little books appear as small confections. The coverboards and the box are made of sturdy pink paper board. The boards and box have a 1/2” wide gilt frame (applied by a heated metal plate, the plate was dipped in gilt and the design was pressed into the board). The spine of the book and the sides of the box have a gilt stamped embellishment of intertwining trellis vines.
The French text contains five full page engravings (engraved images of works of art). There is a section of music and a small yearly diary in the back. Each monthly page of the diary has the most exquisite engraving depicting children in learning exercises. The page edges of the text are gilded and retain the very brilliant original patina. The book slides into the etui (box) from the bottom.
It measures 4 3/4” x 3” x 1/2” thick. It is in very good antique condition; the box pink paper of the box and binding has darkened slightly consistent with age and use.
This genre of binding is so interesting. One can imagine a young lady in a beautiful summer dress taking this book from her pocket to sit and enjoy the diverse text under a green shade tree.
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18th and 19th Century French Antiques
Purveyor of French Small Antiques: Boxes, Objets Vertu, Perfume Flacons, Fine Bindings; 18 th Century to Napoleon III Era.