Le Jeu de Paume son histoire et sa description
Le Jeu de Paume son histoire et sa description

Le Jeu de Paume son histoire et sa description.

Paris: Didier & Cie, Libraires-Éditeurs, 1862.

First edition. With half-title and title printed in red and black, 14 albumen prints mounted on grey card and numbered as 16 plates. Imprimé de Pillet fils ainé. 71, [5] pp of text. 1 vols. 4to. Bound in original red cloth, front cover with gilt title surmounting a motif of crossed rackets and balls, title repeated on spine Covers slightly sunned. Very fine internally. Exhibited: The Queen's Club, 2004, no. 310. Garnett p. 293; Henderson p. 191; NOEL AND CLARK, "NOTHING MORE VALUABLE as a contribution to the history of tennis in early times has ever been written (pp.289-291). Item #225395

ONE OF THE GREAT HISTORIES OF THE GAME, THE FIRST TENNIS BOOK AFTER LUKIN AND THE FIRST TO USE PHOTOGRAPHIC PLATES. Among them are photographs ofJ. Edmond Barre (paumier to Emperor Napoleon III) , Charles Delahaye ("Biboche") and England's Edmund Tompkins, Raymond Masson (paumier to Louis XV), the exterior of the court at the Tuileries Gardens, and an intriguing form of outdoor tennis involving clusters of players on a wide area of grass. The contents are wide-ranging, even including a poem by Bajot on longue paume.
A good summary of the work is given by Noel and Clark (pp. 289-291) who say of Fournier's "notice": "nothing more valuable as a contribution to the history of tennis in early times has ever been written".
Although Chapus compiled the book, his name does not appear on the title. The generous margins and method of illustration suggest that it was intended for a small luxury market. There is also an edition of the same date in a smaller octavo format with 6 plates.

Price: $12,500.00 Free International Delivery