Paris: Delpech, 1830. Item #04817
A Scarce Sampler of Social Pretensions
The Jovial Spirit and Verve of Monnier
On the Ridiculous, Freakish Vanities of Parisian Society
MONNIER, Henri. Boutades [Jokes]. Paris: Delpech, n.p. .
First edition complete as issued. Oblong quarto (11 1/8 x 14 3/8 in; 283 x 365 mm). Hand-colored pictorial engraved title-page and six superb hand-colored lithographs. Loose, as issued.
The hand-colored lithograph title-page depicts a liveried black servant offering a group of caricatures for your consideration.
Chemised in a half green morocco clamshell case, spine with five raised bands, ruled and lettered in gilt.
An album of extreme scarcity, with no copies coming to auction within the last forty-six years. OCLC/KVK locate only one complete copy in libraries and institutions worldwide at The Getty Research Institute Library (US, CA). The Morgan Library and Museum (US, NY) - have an imperfect copy at the bequest of Gordon N. Ray, 1987, lacking title-page and plate 2 (Dilettanti).
We have seen this album once before - it had five of six of the plates (missing plate # 3 Idée Riante)
In 1830, Henri Monnier, the master of whimsical caricature satirizing the pretensions of French society, published Boutades, an album containing six hand-colored lithographed plates depicting, with his characteristic jovial elán, the ridiculous, freakish caprices of the Parisian social set.
Plate number six, appropriately titled, Explosion, provides us with what is, to the best of my research, the first documented example of When Breasts Accidentally Go Wild. Here, it appears that a young Parisian woman, her size ten tetons stuffed into a size two blouse for maximum fashionably chic decolletage, has become a victim of her vanity, physics winning this battle of the bulge, public safety the loser. A person could get hurt, the dame's seins slapping passersby.
Though celebrity "nip-slips" - accidental or accidentally on purpose - have become all too common, Boutades is a color-plate album of extreme scarcity, with no copies coming to auction within the last thirty-six years. OCLC/KVK locate only one copy in libraries worldwide, at the Getty Research Institute Library.
1. La Lecture du journal. (Reading the newspaper)
2. Dilettanti. (Amateurs)
3. Ideé Riante. (Spacious ideas)
4. Méditation. (Meditation)
5. Tapisseries. (Tapestries)
6. Explosion. (Explosion)
Bobins V, 1546; Marie 454-460; Not mentioned in Melcher.