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Thibault, Girard

Academie de l`Espée.


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  • Leiden
  • 1628
  • 1628
  • Book
  • 55.3 x 42 cm (21.75 x 16,5 inches).
  • Willems 302; Lipperheide Td 25; Gelli 448; Thimm 171.
  • 26725
  • A beautiful large finely hand colored example of the 'Academie de l`Espée' by Girard Thibault. Due of the large number of engravings and their extremely fine detailed engraved scenes, hand colored examples of this book (even in later hand color) are extremely rare seen. Overall in very good to exellent condition, very few pages or plates with minor, mainly small marginal skillfully repairs or mendings. Beautiful rebound in brown marbled calf, richly gilt and blind stamped.

Article description

Article description

Engraved title and portrait, nine full page engraved plates with coats of arms and 46 (45 of them are double page) fine engraved plates. All these engravings are exceptional finely hand colored throughout by a later hand. 2 unnumbered pages, 276 separate paginated pages; the decorative and beautiful binding in brown modern marbled calf; the covers with their inner and outer edges richly stamped and gilt, spine also gilt and bound in 6 compartments. Imperial folio. The 'Academie de l'Espée' is overall the most famous fencing book with highly decorative fine engraved plates ever published. It was printed and published by the brothers B. & A. Elzevir in Leiden 1628. This enormous book is illustrated with an engraved title, one portrait, 9 plates of coats of arms and 46 (of which 45 are double page) fine engraved plates of fencing scenes by the famous Dutch engravers Crispin de Pass, J. Gilli, Wilhelm J. Delff, Crispian Quebon and others. All plates in this book (including the title, portrait and coat of arms) are finely hand colored by a later hand. The hand coloring is executed in absolute accuracy and delicate throughout. The fine engraved details of the various fencing scenes are hand colored with much care and stand out one of a kind in their beauty. 'This splendid equipped masterwork of typography is a curiosity as a manual of the art of fencing, which tries to overcall the meshed rules of the Spanish fencing school. Its worth for the history of the art of fencing is based on that, that it shows hundreds scenes of fencing pairs, which are missing illustrations in the Spanish fencing books of that period' (translated from the German reference Lipperheide 2960).

Willems 302; Lipperheide Td 25; Gelli 448; Thimm 171.

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