Paris, Prault, 1748.
8vo [180 x 118 mm] of 1 frontispiece, (4) ll., 205 pp., (2), (1) bl.p. Bound in full contemporary red morocco, triple gilt fillet on the covers with corner fleurons, large gilt arms in the center, spine ribbed and decorated with gilt fleurons, inner gilt border, gilt over marbled edges. Contemporary binding.
First edition of Pesselier’s Fables denoting the noticeable influence from La Fontaine. Sander 1524; Soleinne, Bibliothèque dramatique, 1792; Barbier, Dictionnaire des anonymes, 2319; Cohen 792.
“Pesselier (1712-1763) was a French writer. He was employed at the king’s farms. A great importance was given to his dexterity, and the general farmers gave him quite an important amount of money per year to run a school of finance at home. Pleasant and wise written works had him elected at the Academies of Nancy, Amiens, Rouen and Angers. ‘He was, Voisenon says, a man of an irreproachable integrity. As he gained a quite comfortable and wealthy position, he brought home his entire wife’s family he adopted. He put a lot of charm in his house, gave from time to time little shows, which plays were written by him and it was there their true scene’. We have from him: ‘Fables nouvelles’, Paris, 1748, 8vo: in which we can find spirit and delicacy”. (Nouvelle biographie générale, XXXIX, 681).
“Pesselier’s fables seem to have been written especially to teach the youth. It’s a little gracious and fun lesson of moral; his concise and clear style, his own expression full of decency, the choice of subjects, the way they are treated, the intentions presented at each verse, everything makes it suitable to be in the hands of young people. The first edition of Pesselier’s fables is from 1748.” (Fables du chevalier Coupé de Saint-Donat, p. 246).
We can notice the influence La Fontaine had on Pesselier even in the allegoric frontispiece decorating this work and that representing the portrait of La Fontaine’s bust. This frontispiece as well as the title vignette were drawn by Eisen and engraved by Le Bas.
A precious copy bound in contemporary red morocco with the arms of King Louis XV.