Marginal thinking: Jean de Coulonces

The fool
Jean de Coulonces, Fool
Nobleman
Jean de Coulonces, Nobleman

We don't know much about Jean de Coulonces. A book of hours from 2nd July 1492 was printed »pour Jehan de coulonce libraire demourant a Paris sus le pont nostre dame a lenseigne des chantres«, but "pour" is a little ambiguous.

In addition, there exist fragments of his books of hours from around 1503, found in the binding of other books.

There are eight different margins with dances of death, i.e. 24 dancers. They are introduced early in the book and repeated many times. Claudin (Histoire De L'imprimerie, vol. 2, p. 306) writes that most of Coulonces' marginals are also to be found in books printed by Jehan du Pré for Antoine Vérard, but here Claudin must be thinking of the book from 1492, and not this 1503 edition.

The margins we are looking at here are coarse and caricatured and very similar to the 48 figures that were used by Vérard, but they are still not the same. For instance the fool (picture to the left) looks like the fool that was published by Godard and Vérard, but they are not identical.

Then it might be tempting to think that Coulonces might have copied his 24 figures from Vérard's 48, but that's not the case either for Coulonces also has a column with nobleman, abbot and bailiff and with bride, darling wife and young girl that Vérard doesn't have.

Coulonces has a nobleman (pictured right), so you'd think he had borrowed nobleman, abbot and bailiff from Antoine Chapiel, who has the same column (he had only this one), but again they are too different.

Now we'll look at a very different variant by Thielman Kerver.

Go forth
 

The next chapter is about an alternate (and in many ways very famous) series by Thielman Kerver.

The previous subject was Vérard & Godard.

Jean de Coulonces' 24 dancers

Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Pope
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Pope
Emperor
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Emperor
Cardinal
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Cardinal
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Nobleman
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Nobleman
Abbot
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Abbot
Bailiff
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Bailiff
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Priest
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Priest
Peasant
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Peasant
Franciscan
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Franciscan
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Child
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Child
Clerk
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Clerk
Hermit
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Hermit
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Queen
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Queen
Duchess
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Duchess
Regent
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Regent
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Prioress
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Prioress
Young woman
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Young woman
Citizen
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Citizen
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Bride
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Bride
Darling wife
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Darling wife
Young girl
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Young girl
Coulonces
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Coulonces
Witch
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Witch
Bigot woman
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Bigot woman
Fool
Jean de Coulonces 1503: Fool

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