TABLETTES HISTORIQUES ET CRONOLOGIQUES [sic] DES GUERRES DE FRANCE. Contenant les Batailles, les Combats et les Sièges les plus considérables de cette Monarchie, avec les Paix, les Traitez, les Ligues et les autres evenemens qui y ont eu du rapport. Presentées a mon seigneur le Duc de Bourgogne... A Paris, Chez Jean Mariette, rue St. Jacques aux Colonnes d’Hercule. Avec privilege du Roy.
1704. Small oblong 12mo, ff. , with instruction page and final explanatory page mounted as front and rear pastedowns; ff. 42v and ff. 43 neatly penned in manuscript, otherwise entirely etched/engraved throughout; lightly soiled and browned, with some offsetting to first and last pages from binding, a few leaves cropped a little close shaving a few letters but without significant loss; an attractive copy in contemporary full red morocco, all edges gilt, spine with raised bands, ruled and decorated in gilt, with triple fillet border to covers and inner gilt dentelles; with the ownership signature of ‘P. L. Barville’ at tail of title-page. First edition, seemingly a reissue of the 1703 edition with date amended on title-page, of this rare and elegantly produced historical aide-memoire, a charming typographical curio entirely etched and engraved throughout providing a chronological and historical synopsis of the wars, significant battles and sieges fought by France up until the beginning of the 18th century.
Opening with ‘Instructions for use’ which have been laid down on the front pastedown, ‘Squire’ Feuquerolles presents his synopsis through a series of 41 double-page tables, incorporating a number of small symbols to indicate related victories, losses, whether the battles involved the infantry, cavalry or navy, any resulting treaties or leagues, political assassinations, and other associated events. A chronological index table follows, together with a list of French Kings, and a final explanatory note mounted on the rear pastedown. In the present copy, the previous owner has added in at Ff. 42v-43 a hand-written ‘Alphabetical Table of the Countries, Peoples and Nations with whom France had fought. The alphabetical index is not present in either the Napoli online version of the 1703 edition, nor the British Library 1704 digitised copy. The tables were originally engraved on a larger sheet and have been then cut down, and in this copy mounted back to back, arranged both chronologically and geographically, to form this pocket notebook. The order found here differs to the British Library copy, the leaves of which do not appear to have been laid back to back. The period spans from the battle of Catalan in 451 through to the outbreak of the War of the Spanish Succession at the end of 1701. Feuquerolles classifies the campaigns geographically and thematically, beginning with ‘Guerres Gauloises’, followed by France, Lorraine, Belgian, German, English, overseas, Italian, Alpine, Crusades and Holy Wars, Spanish, French civil wars, popular wars and unrest, etc. The columns in each table note the date, place of combat, battle commander, number of dead, wounded, prisoners, besieged cities, the date of the peace, associated treaties, and marriages etc.
Not much larger than the size of a deck of cards, Fequerolle’s work bears a close similarity to the earlier works of Guillaume Marcel (1647-1708), the noted lawyer and historian, and who wrote a number of popular engraved pocket chronological histories including Tablettes chronologiques contenant la suite des Papes, Empereurs et Roys qui ont regné depuis la naiss. de J. Chr. jusqu’à présent (1679) and Tablettes chronologiques contenant avec ordre l'état de l'Eglise en Orient et en Occident (1682). This appears to be the only work by Sieur de Feuquerolles, and he dedicates it to the Duke of Burgundy.
Bibliography: OCLC locates a copy of the 1703 edition at Princeton with a digitised copy from the Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli found online (showing the final explanatory pastedown leaf with folding head-line not found here), with copies of this 1704 at the BL and BnF (two copies), with a further copy at the Municipal Library of Besançon also bound in red morocco and bearing the armorial stamp of Le Rochefoucauld.