Ecritures (Calligraphy
Ecritures (Calligraphy
Ecritures (Calligraphy
Ecritures (Calligraphy
Ecritures (Calligraphy

DIDEROT, Denis. Ecritures (Calligraphy)

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Diderot on Calligraphy.

DIDEROT, Denis. Ecritures (Calligraphy) Encyclopédie, ou dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers. Plates vol. 2 Paris (1763)

Folio, 253 x 393mm. 52 pages of descriptive text & 16 loose plates with their accompanying 8 text sheets from the volume of plates. Slight browning to margins, a little spotting otherwise very good.
The 16 plates and descriptive text for the entry of Ecritures from volume II of plates. Plates are numbered 1-16. All are single plates with their own titles. The first plate is a title page. The following titles are then The Art of Writing (2 plates), Position of the Hand and Knife. Different Ways to Cut the Quill. Proportions of a Quill , Positions of the Quill, Radical Figures, Height, Width and Slant of Letters , Preparatory Exercises, Ronde Alphabets, Bâtarde Alphabets, Coulée Alphabets, Quills for Straight Lines, Capital Letters and Abbreviations , Different Types of Ronde Letters, Different Types of Bâtarde Letters and finally Different Types of Coulée Letters.
1 page (3) from volume I of the Encyclopédie (1751) including information on L'ecriture par abréviations
2 pages (379 & 391) from volume II of the Encyclopédie (1751) including Les anciens Grecs and Projets d'une écriture universelle
2 pages (282 & 588) from volume III of the Encyclopédie (1753) including Lettre en chemise and Avis à ceux qui écrivent
9 pages (358-372 & 435) from volume V of the Encyclopédie (1755) including Les Mexicans, Thoot, secrétaire d'un roi d'Egypte, Le langage a suivi les mêmes révolutions que l'écriture, Exemples qui le démontrent, Les jugemens sur la preuve par comparison d'écritures, Ecritures d'avocats, Moyen de vivisier l'écriture effacée and Différence entre l'écriture & l'hyéroglyphe
3 pages (90, 440 & 441) from volume VI of the Encyclopédie (1756) including Les leçons d'écritures pour un enfant and Crime de fausses écritures
8 pages (749 & 841-847) from volume VII of the Encyclopédie (1757) including Ecriture gothique and Grammaire
7 pages (76, 83, 205, 221, 283, 552 & 934) from volume VIII of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Ecriture hébraïque, Différentes méthodes dans la maniere d'écrire, Premiere espece d'écriture, L'art d'érire a été long-tems rare en France & en Espagne, Ecriture chinoise, Example d'une écriture singuliérement menue and Ecriture italienne ou batarde
6 pages (430-433, 455 & 906) from volume IX of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Observations historiques, & principes de cet art, Les liaisons é observer dans les lettres & dans les mots and Précautions que Charles IX prit contr'eux
1 page (467) from volume X of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Différentes manieres d'écriture
3 pages (248, 485 & 878) from volume XI of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Etymologie du mot scribere, Ecorce & feuilles d'arbres sur lesquelles les Indiens écrivent and further information on L'écriture par abréviations
2 pages (161 & 861) from volume XIII of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Position du corps en l'écriture and Reconnoissance d'écriture
1 page (359) from volume XIV of the Encyclopédie (1765) describing L'ecriture ronde
6 pages (815-819 & 556) from volume XV of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Ecriture courante, Projets d'une écriture universelle, Instrument nommé style and further information on Ecriture par abréviations
1 page (68) from volume XVII of the Encyclopédie (1765) including Vérification d'écriture

With some browning to a few leaves.

With its own engraved titlepiece, this suite of plates is an important and useful guide to calligraphy, as practised in eighteenth-century France. There follow two scenes of a gentleman and a gentlewoman at their writing desks, and the quills and correct postures for writing are shown. The cutting of the quill is explained, and the various shapes of nib are displayed. The Encyclopédie was meant as a practical guide, and the preparatory exercises in this suite are a fine example of this. The plates and the text entry for Lettres are largely the work of Charles Paillasson. Paillasson was appointed master of the Communauté des maîtres écrivains in 1756, a writer to the King's Cabinet in 1776, and eventually became the First Secretary of the Office of the King four years later.
Many other related text entries are included, and these tackle more specific subjects. Chevalier Louis de Jaucourt wrote on oriental writing and hieroglyphs, while Abbé Edme Mallet discusses Ecritures Saintes, or Holy Scripture. Antoine-Gaspard Boucher D'Argis contributes a number of entries, and various other subjects, such as tachygraphy, are approached.