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[Paris bird's-eye view] Bretez, Plan de Paris Commence l'Annee 1734...Leve et Desine par Louis Bretez Grave par Claude Lucas et Ecrit par Aubin. Paris, 1739. Large folio. Contemporary gilt-decorated calf rebacked and restored. Arms of Paris, fleur-de-lis corner pieces and dentelles on front and back covers. Spine with raised bands and ten compartments, one with gilt-title label and others with gilt-tooled fleur-de-lis. Losses to head and heel of spine and to part of covers replaced with matching calf. Edge wear. Contemporary marbled endpapers. Internally VG+. A key map plus 20 double-page mapsheets (sheets 18 and 19 with the large title cartouche are joined and folded) forming a bird's-eye view of Paris looking to the southeast. Printed on thick creamy paper. The twenty sheets if joined would form a map approximately 250 x 322 cm (99" x 127"). SOLD

In 1734 Michel Etienne Turgot, Prevot des Marchands du Paris (effectively the Mayor of Paris) from 1729 - 1740, asked artist Louis Bretez to prepare a new map of the city. It would be as large and as accurate as possible. This was a period of relative prosperity between the Mississippi Bubble of 1719 and the Seven Years War of the 1750s, and the map may have had commercial benefits in promoting Paris, as well as to please the King. Bretez took several years to gather data for this massive undertaking. down to the appearance of individual buildings. His stunning design was then engraved by Claude Lucas. The plan is highly acclaimed for both its beauty and its accurate information about 18th century Paris.







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