Catalog Archive
Auction 153, Lot 504

"[Lot of 3] Bordeaux [and] Marseille. Ancient Massilia [and] Toulon. Ancient Telo Martius", SDUK Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge

Subject: Bordeaux, Marseille & Toulouse, France

Period: 1832-40 (dated)


Color: Hand Color

14.9 x 12.1 inches
37.8 x 30.7 cm

The beginning of the nineteenth century saw a period of rapid market growth and innovation in the map publishing world. Increased literacy and public interest in new frontiers and colonies overwhelmed the market because it was oriented toward the small, affluent market of the previous century. With the intent to fill this void, The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (SDUK) was founded in 1828 in London, by Lord Brougham and a group of men dedicated to the education of the aspiring working class and the Utilitarian ideal of 'Knowledge is Power.' The society produced an array of education materials, but the series of maps was one of their most successful ventures. A number of engravers and printers were used to produce the maps, which eventually exceed 200 sheets, and continued to be published after the Society as a whole ceased to function.

This handsome set includes three steel-engraved plans of French cities including:

A. Bordeaux. Very finely rendered plan of the city that includes the palace of Louis XVI at center. Terrific detail of many buildings and streets. Two large panoramic engravings along the bottom titled "View of Bordeaux, from the Quai des Salinieres" and "View of Bordeaux from the Quai des Cartrons." Both beautifully done and filled with large ships under full sail. Published by Baldwin & Cradock.

B. Marseille. Ancient Massilia. Attractive engraved plan of the city. The important harbor is guarded by the walled fortresses of Citadel St. Nicolas and Fort St. Jean. Includes details of a planned inland waterway or canal with docks. Legend shows a remarkable increase of over 25% in the city's population between 1827 and 1837.

C. Toulon. Ancient Telo Martius. Well executed plan of the fortified city depicting the streets, major buildings, fortifications and port. At the bottom is a panoramic view of the beautiful city from the east. Size varies slightly.


Condition: B+

Original color with pleasant light toning and a few small spots of foxing mostly in the blank margins.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $90

Closed on 5/20/2015