Etat de la France,
dans lequel on voit tout ce qui regarde le gouvernment ecclesiastique, le militaire, la justice, les finances, le commerce, les manufactures, le nombre des habitans, & en general tout ce qui peut faire connôitre à fond cette Monarchie.London: T. Wood & S. Palmer, 1727-8 Stock Code: 141842
First edition. Boulainvillier's work, an administrative survey of France, provides an essential account of the political and social structure of the Ancien Régime. As with his other historical works, published in the years following his death in 1722, Boulainvillier strongly supports the right of the parlements and nobility against the absolutism of the king, political views which had led to controversy throughout his life. The frankness with which he laid bare the causes of the financial distress of France ensured his works were often prohibited there, and most were not published until after his death, as here. His work has recently been re-evaluated as an early work of French nationalism, focusing on the nation as opposed to the kingdom, and portraying an ancient, inalienable Frankish constitution which Bourbon absolutism was undermining (Bell, The Cult of the Nation in France, pp. 57-9).
3 volumes, folio (348 x 222 mm). Contemporary mottled calf, expertly rebacked and recornered to style, twin red morocco labels, spines gilt in compartments, red speckled edges.
Engraved folding map of France in vol. I.
Second volume with bookplate of James Hamilton, Duke of Hamilton & Brandon, to front pastedown; old bookseller's descriptions loosely inserted; a few pencilled annotations to contents. Endpapers soiled, bindings without wear, contents crisp, generally clean aside from very sporadic soiling, a few very minor peripheral paper repairs and short closed tears. An excellent set.
ESTC T129566; INED 713; Goldsmiths' 6496; Kress 3677.
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