La Grande Diablerie, poem du XVe siècles, by Éloy d’Amerval (George Hurtrel, Artiste-Édueur, Paris, 1884, #152/1000 hand signed by publisher)
5″ x 6.75″, 216pp, in original published state, french wraps with loose hardcover/case, red with gilt decoration, frontispiece and 3 full page engravings by Paul Avril protected by tissue guard, images throughout, good minus condition, spine cover is sunned, binding is loose and splitting in places
Eloy d’Amerval (fl. 1455 – 1508) was a French composer, singer, choirmaster, and poet of the Renaissance. He spent most of his life in the Loire Valley of France. From his poetic works, the long poem Le livre de la deablerie, it can be inferred that he knew most of the famous composers of the time, even though his own musical works never approached theirs in renown. This poem, considered invaluable to music historians, recounts a dialogue between Satan and Lucifer, in which their nefarious plotting of future evil deeds is interrupted periodically by the author, who among other accounts of earthly and divine virtue, records useful information on contemporary musical practice. In addition to listing musical instruments, he lists who he considers to be the great composers of the time: they are residents of Paradise in his poem, even though several were still alive in 1508, the date of its composition.
Édouard-Henri Avril (1849-1928) used the pseudonym “Paul Avril” for his erotic work. He was a French painter and commercial artist. His career saw collaboration with influential people like Octave Uzanne, Henry Spencer Ashbee and Friedrich Karl Forberg. He is one of the most celebrated erotic artists of his age. Avril was a soldier before starting his career in art. He was awarded with the Legion of Honour for his actions in the Franco-Prussian War.