London: , 1781. Item #00046
In a Contemporary Morocco Binding Attributed To Derôme Le Jeune
ROUSSEAU, [Jean Baptiste]. [DEROME, Nicholas Denis aka Le Jeune, binder; attributed to]. Œuvres de Rousseau. Nouvelle édition. London: 1781.
Two twelvemo volumes (4 5/8 x 2 13/16 inches; 118 x 72 mm.). , 252; , 276 pp. Engraved frontispiece portrait by Delvaux in Volume I.
Contents: Volume I, “Odes sacrées,” “Odes, Liv. II-IV,” and “Cantates allégoriques.” Volume II, “Epitres, Liv. I-II,” “Allégories, Liv. I-II,” “Epigrammes, Liv. I-IV,” and “Poésies diverses.”
Contemporary full red morocco attributed to Derôme Le Jeune, unsigned but with dentelles à l'oiseau, characteristic of Derôme, to volume two. Covers with gilt triple fillet border, smooth spines decoratively tooled in gilt in panels with two olive green morocco gilt lettering labels, board edges with single gilt fillet, gilt dentelles à l'oiseau, all edges gilt, bright blue endpapers. The absolute bare minimum of rubbing to extremities. A wonderful example.
"Derôme was born on October 1, 1731, became a master binder on March 31, 1761, and was elected one of the Gardes en Charge of the Community of the Master Binders and Guilders of the City and University of Paris on May 10, 1773 at the same time as François Gaudreau, binder to the dauphine. He died around the year 1788 [i.e. 1790].... the designs used by Derôme on his bindings are extremely graceful, and rival those of Padeloup, to which they have a strong resemblance. It is be true that he purchased the material and stamps of this binder at the sale of his effects after his death, it explains to some extent the great similarity of the ornamentation employed by the two artists. Derôme executed many mosaic bindings, but his great renown has been gained by his dentelles, especially those in which he introduced a little bird with outstretched wings, and which are in consequence termed dentelles à l'oiseau" (Fletcher, W.I., Bookbinding in France).
Marius Michel, in La Reliure Française, says that Derôme sought and found in the industries of his time the elements for new decoration, and crowned his efforts with the dentelles to which he has given his name, and which are distinguished from preceding ones by not being made up of the same tools in repetition, but in combination, thus affording more variety.
"Jean-Baptiste Rousseau (April 6, 1671- March 17, 1741), was a French poet. He was born in Paris, the son of a shoemaker, and was well educated. As a young man, he gained favour with Boileau, who encouraged him to write. Rousseau began with the theatre, for which he had no aptitude. A one-act comedy, Le Café, failed in 1694, and he was not much happier with a more ambitious play, Le Flatteur (1696), or with the opera Venus et Adonis (1697). In 1700 he tried another comedy, Le Capricieux, which had the same fate. He then went with Tallard as an attaché to London, and, in days when literature still led to high position, seemed likely to achieve success.
"His misfortunes began with a club squabble at the Café Laurent, which was much frequented by literary men, and where he indulged in lampoons on his companions. A shower of libellous and sometimes obscene verses was written by or attributed to him, and at last he was turned out of the café. At the same time his poems, as yet printed only singly or in manuscript, acquired him a great reputation, due to the dearth of genuine lyrical poetry between Jean Racine and André de Chénier. In 1701 he was made a member of the Académie des inscriptions; he was offered, though he had not accepted, profitable places in the revenue department; he had become a favourite of the libertine but influential côterie of the Temple; and in 1710 he presented himself as a candidate for the Académie française.
"Verses more offensive than ever were handed round, and gossip maintained that Rousseau was their author. Legal proceedings of various kinds followed, and Rousseau ascribed the lampoon to Joseph Saunin. In 1712 Rousseau was prosecuted for defamation of character, and, on his non-appearance in court, was condemned to perpetual exile. He spent the rest of his life in foreign countries except for a clandestine visit to Paris in 1738; he refused to accept the permission to return which was offered him in 1716 because it was not accompanied by complete rehabilitation.
"Prince Eugène and then other persons of distinction took him under their protection during his exile, and at Soleure he printed the first edition of his poetical works. He met Voltaire in Brussels in 1722. Voltaire's Le Pour et le contre is said to have shocked Rousseau, who expressed his sentiments freely. At any rate the latter had thenceforward no fiercer enemy than Voltaire. His death elicited from Jean-Jacques Lefranc, marquis de Pompignan an ode that was perhaps better than anything of Rousseau's own work. That work may be roughly divided into two sections. One consists of formal and partly sacred odes and cantatas of the stiffest character, of which perhaps the Ode a la fortune is the most famous; the other of brief epigrams, sometimes licentious and always, or almost always, ill-natured"(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Baptiste_Rousseau).