MAIRET, François-Ambroise. ~ Notice sur la Lithographie, suivie d’un essai sur la Reliure et le blanchiment des livres et graveurs... Châtillon-sur-Seine: C. Cornillac, 1824.
12mo (148 × 98 mm), pp. 228 plus 5 plates (4 lithograph and 1 engraved). A few spots and stains (including a small stain to the plate of a lithographic press). Contemporary half calf, green embossed glazed paper covered sides. Rubbed, board edges a little more worn. A very good copy.
Second and enlarged edition, which includes the first edition of the second part, on bookbinding (the first edition was published by the author at Dijon in 1818). Mairet’s is one of the important early accounts of lithography with a detailed account of the processes of preparation, the application of images to the stone and of the printing itself (with a plate of a lithographic press). Despite the importance of his treatise on lithography, Mairet is best known as a binder. A native of Dijon, he established himself as a binder and paper-dealer around the year 1806, he later worked mainly as a paper manufacturer. ‘He published, among other works, an Essai sur la reliure et leblanchissement des livres [the present book] in 1824, much of which was used by Lenormand and embodied in the Roret Manuels on Binding... he is probably the greatest binder of the time in the use of classical motives, and his work has much charm and delicacy’ (Ramsden, French Bookbinders, p. 133). The Essai sur la reliure is particularly valuable as a first-hand account of contemporary methods of colouring binding materials and producing decorative effects such marbling on both paper and leather. Bigmore & Wyman II, 14 (’The new edition was printed in a far superior manner to the old one, and the plates are much better executed... Copies are now seldom met with’); Pollard, Early Bookbinding Manuals 52; Twyman Lithography 1800-1850, pp. 92-95.