Les fleurs animées

Collection History

The digital collection draws upon the Library's exhibition, "Victorian Ornament: Excerpts from Design History," Dec. 9, 1989 - March 10, 1990, Edna Barnes Salomon Room, and supplements it with additional works through the 1920s. Holdings from the Victorian period, 1839-1900, are particularly strong covering America and Western Europe; these are often pattern or illustrated advice books. Other movements with representative, and often rare, titles include: Neoclassicism, Art Nouveau, Arts & Crafts, and Art Deco.

Background

The Art & Architecture Collection has long been a repository of unusual plate books, with a core antiquarian collection dating to the initial creation of the Art Division. Many came from the private library of the architect Thomas Hastings, of the partnership, Carrere and Hastings, responsible for the Library's landmark classical revival building on Fifth Avenue. In the second half of the twentieth century, the department acquired additional significant titles retrospectively in response to growing recognition of the collection's depth and rarity.

Collection Data

Description
J. J. Grandville's Les fleurs animées (1847) provides very little scientific information, but is one of the most bizarrely charming of all 19th-century illustrated books. In it, a great caricaturist has drawn fashionable French ladies as lovely, wilting wildflowers or sinister poisonous herbs. The plate for the Narcissus shows a daffodil happily absorbed by her image a pond. In another, a frowning Hemlock, personified with mortar and pestle, prepares dangerous concoctions for her friends; a little frog has already died; a small mouse vomits; and a rabbit dressed as a Roman senator happily swallows his dose.
Names
Grandville, J. J., 1803-1847 (Illustrator)
Karr, Alphonse, 1808-1890 (Author of introduction, etc.)
Delord, Taxile, 1815-1877 (Author)
Geoffroy, Charles Michel, 1819-1882 (Engraver)
Raban, 1795-1870 (Contributor)
Dates / Origin
Date Issued: 1847
Place: Paris
Publisher: Gabriel de Gonet
Library locations
George Arents Collection
Shelf locator: Arents S 1115
Topics
Plants
Flowers
Botany
Fairies
Tobacco
Smoking in art
Genres
Prints
Notes
Content: 'Une malice de la fée aux fleurs'(facetious history and fable of tobacco): p. [61]-66 and plate facing p. 66 (1st group). 'Sensitive' plate facing p. 271) shows beetle smoking. 'Erratum' (plate facing p. 362) shows tobacco personified. "Tabac ... De grace donc, meadames, mesdames, point de tabac, máeme en fleur': p. 127 (3rd group). 'Botanique des dames' and 'Horticulture des dames': iv, 132 p. at end of vol. 2, signed: Cte. Felix (i.e. L.F. Raban).
Content: Added wood-engraved title pages, illustrated in colors.
Content: In the original green cloth, with gilt design after motives in the book, signed: J.J. Grandville, Peau.
Statement of responsibility: Plates engraved on steel by C. M. Geoffroy after Grandville.
Citation/reference: Vicaire: Manuel de l'amateur de livres du XIX siècle, III, 133-134 // Carteret: Tréssor du bibliophile, III, 286
Statement of responsibility: par J.-J. Grandville ; introductions par Alph. Karr ; texte par Taxile Delord.
Physical Description
Engravings
Extent: 2 v. (364, iv, 132 p.) 52 plates (50 col.) 28 cm.
Type of Resource
Still image
Identifiers
RLIN/OCLC: NYPG83-B31772
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b10782956
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 1c0142f0-c6f4-012f-ae46-3c075448cc4b
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