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LOUIS, Victor (1731--1800)
Salle de spectacle de Bordeaux, par M. Louis.
[Paris]: Aux dèpens [sic] de l'auteur. Et se trouve a Paris, chez Esprit, libraire, 1782.
[2], 10, [2] p., engr. dedic., XXII engr. pl. (1 double-page) ; 67.8 cm. (1º)

Printer's statement of Cailleau at the foot of p. [12]. Louis's Grand Théâtre at Bordeaux was designed in 1773 after the previous Salle de Spectacles had been destroyed in a fire in 1755. The new Neo-classical theatre, built between 1775 and 1778, was innovative in its use of dramatic spaces and lumière mystérieuse, and influenced later theatre architecture. The plates (some numbered in roman numerals, some in arabic) include plans (pl. I--XI), elevations and cross-sections (pl. 12--18), and perspective views (pl. 19--21). Plate XXII, not listed in the 'Explication Des Planches' on p. [11], contains comparative plans of the Bordeaux and other European theatres with a note drawing attention to the difference in floor area compared to the Paris Opera. A note in the 'Explication ...' lists an additional optional plate of the ceiling painted by Robin and engraved by Le Mire, separately issued and available from the same bookseller, and requests the binder to reserve a stub for its inclusion. Soane's two copies are both without this plate, as are the BAL and Millard copies. BAL, Early printed books, no. 1966; Millard I, 108; Berlin Kat. 2812.

Copy Notes Copy 1: Translation note in pencil, probably in Soane's hand, on p. 3. Plates 12--19 and 21 are numbered in pencil No. 1 (--8, 10). Inscribed in ink on the recto of a binder's leaf pasted to the verso of the marbled leaf forming the first front free-endpaper, but legible through the verso, are binder's notes Russia ... marbel paper and the name Taylor, possibly the architectural bookseller Josiah Taylor.
Copy 2: 66.8 cm. Inscribed in pencil on second front free-endpaper 6..6..0 rare. This is probably the copy bought from Priestley and Weale for 5 guineas, 24 May 1826. (Priv. Corr. XVI.E.6.9). A copy of the work is listed as item 536 in Priestley and Weale's 1825 catalogue Bibliotheca architectonica (q.v.). On 3 December 1823 Lord Colchester wrote to Soane enquiring whether he had a copy of the work, as 'the Book is not to be found at The British Museum, nor in The King's Library at Buckingham House', but there is no record of Soane's reply. (Archives 8/88/-).

Binding Copy 1: C19th half russia calf, marbled-paper boards, gilt roll-tooled spine, gilt-lettered 'Theatre / De / Bordeaux', marbled endpapers matching the boards.
Copy 2: C19th half calf, marbled-paper boards, gilt double-ruled and blind roll-tooled spine with gilt-tooled false bands, green morocco spine-label, marbled endpapers matching the boards.

Reference Number 5589


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