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A Treatise of the Five Orders of Columns in Architecture
1708. PERRAULT, Charles. A Treatise of the Five Orders of Columns in Architecture, viz. Tuscan, Doric, Ionic, Corinthian and Composite, wherein The Proportions and Characters of the Members of their several Pedestals, Columns and Entablatures, are distinctly consider'd, with respect to the Practice of the Antients and Moderns. Also a most Natural, Easie and Practicable Method laid down for determining the most minute Part in all the Orders, without a Fraction. To which is Annex'd a Discourse concerning Pilasters: and of several Abuses introduc'd into Architecture. Translated into English by John James. [iv], xxii, 42, 45-132, [6] pp. Illustrated with additional title, engraved title, dedication, and double-page list of subscribers plus seven full-page engraved plates also with numerous engraved initials, head- and tailpieces and in-text diagrams. Folio, 363 x 230 mm, bound in contemporary English speckled calf, spine gilt with red morocco label, board edges tooled. London: B. Motte, 1708. First English Edition. A choice copy of Charles Perrault's (1613-1688) expansions and personal clarifications on perceived misconceptions of the Vitruvian Orders. First published in French in 1683, Ordonnance des Cinq Espece de Colonnes was met with much controversy and disdain on the Continent, however it found a much more eager audience in England. The seventeenth century had produced little of substance on architecture in that country and this work along with the translation (also by John James) of Pozzo's Rules and Examples of Perspective began a proliferation of architectural publications that would last through the eighteenth century. Eileen Harris wrote at length on the present volume, and concluded that it represents a milestone in the architectural history of the British Isles, as no work of comparable quality had previously been published on this subject in English. The original French publication included a series of six engraved plates on the orders and a few other minor diagrams but was considerably plainer than the present edition which, along with the plates of the orders, features a new suite of exquisite vignettes and initials copied from le Clerc's illustrations of Divers suites de figures..., engraved by John Sturt. The whole, thoughtfully arranged and designed, represents a beautiful piece of printing. Joints starting but sound; a fine, clean copy in unrepaired contemporary binding, rare thus. PROVENANCE: The Earls of Macclesfield, with their blind-stamped coat-of-arms on the decorative title-page and the South Library ex-libris stamp on inside front cover. Fowler 248. Harris, British Architectural Books and Writers 700. Millard, British 56.
      [Bookseller: Ursus Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-02-17           Check availability:      Biblio    

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