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Book - Recueil de planches, sur les sciences, les arts libéraux et les arts méchaniques, avec leur explication
  • Recueil de planches, sur les sciences, les arts libéraux et les arts méchaniques, avec leur explication
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Recueil de planches, sur les sciences, les arts libéraux et les arts méchaniques, avec leur explication

  • Object:

    Book

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (published)

  • Date:

    [1762-1772] (published)

  • Museum number:

    38041008210395

  • Gallery location:

    Europe 1600-1815, Room 4, case CA2

Physical description

11 v. : chiefly ill. ; 45 cm.

Place of Origin

Paris (published)

Date

[1762-1772] (published)

Descriptive line

Plates (2888) illustrate the Encyclopédie of Diderot and d'Alembert.
"C'est M. Besnard, graveur, qui a dirigé l'execution des planches le quatrième volume inclusivement jusqu'à la fin de la collection" -- Avertissment, v. 11, p. [ix].
Vols. [1-5] called Livraison 1, 2 (pt. 1-2), 3-4. Vols 6-11 also called Livraison 5-10.
Imprint of v. 4-7 omits Durand; imprint of v. 8-11 names Briasson only.
Includes index (v. 11).

Labels and date

The Encyclopédie

The Encyclopedia, or a Systematic Dictionary of the Sciences, Arts, and Crafts (1751–72) was one of the great works of the Enlightenment. Its aim was to gather all available knowledge, to examine it critically and rationally, and to bring it to a wide public. With 17 volumes of text and 11 of illustrations, this was a vast collaborative project that involved many of the leading thinkers of the day, including Voltaire. The bulk of the work fell to Denis Diderot as author, editor and compiler.

The Tailor
1771

The Encyclopédie paid great attention to the skills and knowledge of manual workers. It gave crafts and manufacturing the same status traditionally given to intellectual activity. To ensure that the descriptions were accurate, Diderot studied the processes and machinery. Though idealised, the illustrations too were often based on direct observation.

France (Paris)
Etching and engraving
Denis Diderot and Jean Le Rond d’Alembert, eds, Recueil de Planches sur les Sciences, les arts libéraux et les arts méchaniques (plates to the Encyclopédie), Vol. 9
National Art Library

The Encyclopédie, Vol. 10, 1765:

‘Trade. This name is given to any profession that requires the use of the hands, and is limited to a certain number of mechanical operations to produce the same piece of work, made over and over again. I do not know why people have a low opinion of what this word implies; for we depend on the trades for all the necessary things of life.’

Family label for Europe 1600-1815:

Young tailors often worked cross-legged. This sometimes caused a painful condition in their feet called ‘tailor’s bunion’. Here they are sitting on a high table, to take advantage of the sunlight and keep the fabric off the floor. The boy by the fire is checking the iron is hot enough.
[09/12/2015]

Categories

National Art Library

Collection

National Art Library

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