A Fundamental Blondel Lecture
Discours sur la Nécessité de l’Architecture…
99,  p. Small 8vo (160 x 107), cont. calf (joints a little worn), red morocco lettering-piece on spine, spine gilt. Paris: C.A. Jombert, 1754.
First edition of this uncommon book, which contains an essential lecture given by Blondel at the opening session of the fifth Cours Publique in his independent Ecole des Arts. This school was founded in 1743, and was able to provide an exhaustive curriculum to a larger and more diverse audience than the Académie. Leading figures of the neo-classical such as Chambers, Patte, Wailly, Desprez, Boullée, and Ledoux all took classes at the school.
This work represents the first appearance of Blondel’s famous lecture in print. To replicate the experience of an actual lecture, the text is supplemented with footnotes, some of which take up several pages. An extensive and most interesting list of important architectural works recommended by Blondel is found on pages 83-89.
A very nice copy. Engraved bookplate of the “Biblioteca Familiae Krafftianae,” a prominent family in Dellmensingen, whose library was dispersed in 1806, and bookplate of Edmond L. Lincoln, both on the front paste-down.
❧ Fowler 50. For more details on Blondel’s school and its pedagogy, see A. Picon, French Architects and Engineers in the Age of Enlightenment (1992).
Item ID: 6975