Fables Choisies Mises en Vers par M. de La Fontaine, Partie 1 - Partie 2
La Fontaine, Jean de
This very fortunate find on eBay joins another book in the collection dated 1727/1728 and containing the third through fifth "books" of La Fontaine's fables. These "books" do not correspond to La Fontaine's usual books but are rather Books VII through XII. This pair of volumes comprises a fine reprint by Chatelain of an edition originally done in 1700 by van Bulderen, a copy of which is in this collection. The anomaly of its dating appears to be that Partie 2 appeared first in 1727, to be followed by Partie 1 a year later. Or perhaps the first half of this volume -- Partie 1 -- is a 1728 reprint of a work first done in 1727. The frontispiece, presumably by Picard with a full explanation in French below it, shows Aesop dictating to La Fontaine with his muse. Aesop looks up to Fable draping truth in clothing, while Morale is their companion. Aesop and La Fontaine are surrounded by the animals active in their stories. There is red print on the title page for Partie 1 (Books I-III) but not for Partie 2 (Books IV-VI); the other Chatelain volume does the same: red for the first but not for the second and third title-pages. This book has the same size illustrations as that volume. Henrik Cause is the engraver and he models these engravings after the drawings of Chauveau, as is clear already in GA (3). The surprisingly large (2¾" x about 3") illustrations are well preserved here. Among the best of them are perhaps "The Thieves and the Ass" (28); OR (45); SS (66); CW (80); MSA (88); "The Ass and the Lapdog" (152); GGE (214); and "The Horse and Ass" (259). 268 pages plus an AI.
Chez Zacharie Chatelain