Work on “Campaign Furniture” is on pace to finish on time – Dec. 31 at midnight is the goal. I have just a few more small projects to build; about half the book is written.
One of the parts of the book I am enamored with is the translation of A.-J. Roubo’s seven pages of text on campaign furniture. While my book focuses on British forms, I wanted to include a little on the French furniture.
Michele Pagan, who translated Roubo for “To Make as Perfectly as Possible,” was happy to translate the sections on French campaign furniture for me. Today, she handed in her translation, which I am working through tonight. The description of beds is quite illuminating, as is the section on tables.
As I have been talking about Roubo’s folding stool, I thought I should give you a peek at a short section of the translation relating to that form. Note that this translation needs a little smoothing – this is the nearly raw version. Still, it is fantastic.
We make yet another type of small seat without a back, which are a very good invention for taking less space when they are folded. These seats are called “echaudés,” and are composed of three uprights of 26 thumbs in length, of a triangular form in their design, such that the three together form a bundle of 2 thumbs [in] diameter. Note that they don’t join exactly at the outer ridge, so as to facilitate their opening. Look at figure 8. These three uprights are held together by three pins made of a single piece, and positioned triangularly, which pass [through] the three uprights, outside of which they are [fastened], such that the uprights spread equally and form the seat. Look at figure 6, which represents the elevation, and figure 7, which represents the design closed as well as opened, where the ends of the uprights are lettered the same on the sides. Look also at figure 5, which represents the “echaudé” completely closed with the rivet seams of the pins, which are placed at 2 thumbs higher than the middle, so as to give more impalement to the seat. The top of this is nothing but a piece of leather or some sort of fabric attached at the end of the three uprights.
— Christopher Schwarz