[France] Author 1882-1890 4to. Oblong red pebble cloth. The binding has some minor defects and a superficial tear on the hinge. Collation: [iv - title and blank lls], [66] pp. + 23 hand-drawn maps. Title page is decorated with a floral frieze. The color maps are drawn within a multiple line border that is knotted in corners. The text pages have simple double line border that artist has drawn. The maps illustrate general outline of countries and neighboring land or sea. Names of countries and some cities are noted in map. Each map is drawn in an esthetic manner but lacking exact cartographic accuracy. An example is the drawing of different regions for Canada in the map of North America. Each map is accompanied by two to four carefully written descriptive pages. The text describes land water, productions, human race for the country, civilization, zoology, mineralogy and physical aspect. A general image of the globe and all countries is illustrated. France is given the most treatment with a number of maps for Divisions, Provences, Basins, Climate, Physical (Mountains and Rivers). (Item ID: 0000713)


The details in the text for different maps vary but capture the essence of the country or region and the native people. Although the color maps are not very detailed, they have a real aesthetic value and reflect the world viewed by the French bourgeoisie of the nineteenth century. The atlas is in good condition and shows the real artistic talent of its Marie Ponson. There are two printed religious documents inserted loose at front. These documents record the day when Marie Ponson received her first communion in the Catholic Church and when she was officially consecrated to the Order of St. Vierge in 1882. She originally entered the order in 1878, which suggests that the preparation of the Atlas was undertaken after Marie Ponson was formally made a Sister of the Order of the Blessed Virgin (Ste Vierge) in 1882.

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