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    The First Octavo Edition of Redouté's Roses, with 160 Fine Hand-Colored Plates and in a Sumptuous Binding

    Pierre Joseph Redouté and Claude Antoine Thory. Les Roses. Paris: C. L. F. Panckoucke, 1824.

    First octavo edition. Two volumes. Unpaginated. 160 hand-colored plates with tissue guards. Four-page prospectus bound in after title page.

    Contemporary full red calf. Ornate designs to boards. Gilt lettering and designs to spines. Marbled endpapers. Tipped-in letter to front free flyleaf of volume two, which begins: "Mon cher Redouté." Mild scratching to boards. Foxing throughout. A beautiful set of this important work. Near fine condition.

    "Redouté's great chance came when, in 1798, Josephine Bonaparte acquired Malmaison and resolved to establish there a garden for rare plants. As was the fashion, she searched for an artist to make records of them, and her choice fell upon Redouté. Thus were born Ventenat's Jardin de Malmaison (1803-04) and Bonpland's Description des Plantes rares cultivées à Malmaison et à Navarre (1812-17), both superbly illustrated in colour by Redouté. To the same period belong the eight magnificent volumes of Les Liliacées (1802-16), which were followed by the still more famous Les Roses (1817-24)" (Sitwell). This, the octavo edition of Les Roses, was first published in 1824.

    The tipped-in letter addressed to Redouté appears to be from a person named Guérin (perhaps Modeste Guérin, the flower cultivator). The Rosa Gallica Gueriniana (Guérin's Rose) was one painted by Redouté, but it does not appear in this octavo edition. The letter is a request by Guérin to borrow an alabaster vase from Redouté.

    Sitwell, Great Flower Books, page 35.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2009
    16th-17th Tuesday-Wednesday
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