Heures nouvelles dédiées à Madame Royale ...

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Accession number: 
PML 125711
A Bruxelles : Chez Jean Joseph Boucherie ..., 1759.
Bequest of Julia P. Wightman, 1995.
[2], 291, [5] pages ; 14 cm (8vo)
Curatorial Comments: 

This prayer book, printed in Brussels in 1759, once belonged to Queen Maria Leszczyńska, wife of King Louis XV, to whom it was dedicated. It is believed that royal bookbinder Pierre-Paul Dubuisson (active 1746-62), was responsible for the binding. The book was bound in dark red Morocco leather and features a central vase of flowers surrounded by butterflies and insects. Adding to its elegance are its adornments of gilt dentelle borders and fillet designs crafted with gold leaf pressed onto the leather.
It is likely that Queen Maria Leszczyńska later passed it down to her granddaughter, Élisabeth de France. Madame Élisabeth, as she was known, kept it with her during her family's imprisonment in the Temple fortress by the Republican government in August 1792. She inscribed her name and location of captivity, "Elizabeth/Tempel 1793," on the flyleaf, along with a drawing of the Crucifixion's three crosses. Tragically, Madame Élisabeth met her end at the guillotine on May 10, 1794, at the Place de la Révolution, now known as the Place de la Concorde.


Italic imitating engraving. Each page of text within double rule.
PML copy extra-illustrated with engraved frontispiece of Crucifixion attributed to J. Galle.

Contemporary French red morocco, gilt tooled with a large floral vase tool on covers, within panel-stamped dentelle border, all edges gilt; attributed to Pierre-Paul Dubuisson (previously to Padeloup and Derome le jeune; see also PML 1783-84). The flower vase stamp was used by Dubuisson in the 1750s, see Barber, Rothschild Bequest at Waddesdon Manor: Printed Books and Bindings, vol. II, stamp BV 15.
Maria Leszczyńska (dedication copy?), through inheritance to her granddaughter: Elisabeth de France, inscribed when in prison in Le Temple, 1793 (signature with small sketch of Crucifixion); Andre B. Knox, his sale, Sotheby's London, 12 Aug. 1872, lot 179; with the bookplates of Robert Hoe, Cortlandt F. Bishop, Calvin Bullock, and Julia P. Wightman.