Journals and Notebooks
A display of brilliant fireworks is suggested in our Fire Flowers design, which reproduces a binding of Claude J. Dorat's La Déclamation Théâtrale. Currently held in the British Library's magnificent collection of antique bindings, this is a 20th-century British edition of La Déclamation, which was originally published in 1766 in Paris. La Déclamationis a didactic poem comprising four songs about the rules governing tragedy, comedy, opera and dancing. Dorat was renowned as a musketeer, a bon vivant and a petit maître (minor master), though his works were not critical hits. He was rumoured to have ensured the success of his own plays by buying up all the seats with his own money and he died, penniless, in 1780 after squandering his family fortune. The bright reds and golds of this cover design pay tribute to his incandescent desire to create.