Jacques Renaud Benard – Natural History, Volcanoes. General view of Vesuvius. in 1757


1 in stock

Original copper engraving printed in black ink on laid paper with crescent (Venice) watermark and central vertical fold. Printed: “Mineralogy. 6.me Collection. Volcans. Pl. I.” top of sheet “142. 143.” Lower left “Histoire Naturelle, Volcans. Vue Généralle du Vesuve. En 1757” centre bottom, and the artists monogram “JFB. S.” lower right. Presented in a new mount.

Image frame line: 12 1/2 x 16 5/8 in. (31.3 x 42.3 cm.)
Plate: 14 x 17 5/8 in. (35.6 x 44.8 cm.)
Mount: 20 5/8 x 23 7/8 in. (52.5 x 60.6 cm.)


A wonderful view of Vesuvius during the eruption of 1575, Encyclopédie, ou dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers. The Encyclopédie was published under the direction of Diderot and d ‘Alembert, with 17 volumes of text and 11 volumes of plates between 1751 and 1772. Containing 74,000 articles written by more than 130 contributors. The Encyclopédie was a massive reference work for the arts and sciences as well as a machine de guerre which served to propagate the ideas of the French Enlightenment. The impact of the Encyclopédie was enormous. Through its attempt to classify learning and to open all domains of human activity to its readers, the Encyclopédie gave expression to many of the most important intellectual and social developments of its time.


Benard, Jacques Renaud (1731-1794)

Jacques Benard, improperly said Robert Bénard was a French engraver born in Rosny-sous-Bois in 1731 and died in Paris in 1794. He signed 60% of the Encyclopedia engravings and took part in other monumental editions, like Cook's voyages or the Methodical Encyclopedia, for which he directed a team of 60 people. Thanks to research in the National Archives, in the parish records of the Seine Saint-Denis archives, as well as in the manuscript records of the longitude office, more facts about his life are known. More information can be found on the engraver Jacques Renaud Benard (1731-1794): a major contributor to the Encyclopédie finally identified. Francoise Launay In Research on Diderot and on the Encyclopédie 2019/1 (n° 54) , pages 255 to 273.