Sims Reed Rare Books×

Les Papillons. Métamorphoses Terrestres des Peuples de l'Air

Varin, Amédée. Nus, Eugène & Antony Meray

Paris. Gabriel de Gonet. c.1852
'Les Papillons' in the publisher's polychromatic binding.

Although not a work by Grandville, 'Les Papillons' with its anthropomorphic depictions is very much in a similar style. The series of texts by Nus and Meray are illustrated with fancifully inspired and characterised butterflies by Amédée Varin. Like Grandville's oeuvre, 'Les Papillons' can also be seen as a precursor of Surrealism as the present copy, from the collection of founding Surrealist Paul Eluard with his Ernst-designed bookplate attests. The present copy retains its beautiful polychromatic binding with elaborate gilt stamps heightened with colour.

[Carteret III, 452].
pp. (ii), (i), (i), (i), 232, (i), (i); (ii), (i), (i), (i), 258, (i), (i). 2 vols. Large 8vo. (270 x 190 mm). Half-titles with printer's credit verso, engraved pictorial titles with additional colour by hand and printed titles to each vol. and text illustrated with 35 wood-engravings by Varin (including pictorial titles) each with additional colour by hand, final section 'Entomologie des Dames' with numerous monochrome text vignettes.. Original publisher's dark blue percaline with elaborate polychromatic decoration, front boards with gilt title and elaborate decorative border to surround central vignette ('Le Bolero' see vol. 2, page 87) with additional colour, butterfly vignette to rear covers, smooth spines with gilt titles and elaborate gilt tooling, yellow glazed endpapers, a.e.g.

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