We are pleased to announce that one of the titles we will publish in 2014 is the first English translation of the woodworking sections of André Félibien’s “Princips de l’architecture…,” an important 17th-century book on the craft. “Princips de l’architecture…” was published before Joseph Moxon’s “Mechanick Exercises,” and its plates were almost certainly copied by Moxon.
The translation will be performed by Brian Anderson, a France-based American woodworker who is a professional translator. Anderson has most recently translated the biography of A.-J. Roubo for “To Make as Perfectly as Possible” and the complete text of “Grandpa’s Workshop.”
The translation will be published in the fall of 2014 in its original 8” x 10” size and will feature all 65 plates of the 797-page book. The translated text will focus on all of the woodworking sections of “Princips de l’architecture…,” which covers a variety of topics from architecture to sculpture and fine-art painting.
Our translation will include Félibien’s entries on the following topics:
Blacksmithing (hinges, locks etc.)
Sculpture in wood (carving)
In order to publish this translation, we have acquired an original copy of “Princips de l’architecture…” (the second edition), which is as fascinating as the original Roubo editions we purchased for “To Make as Perfectly as Possible.”
Why translate Félibien? Well, after working for so many years with Joseph Moxon’s text, I became curious about Félibien’s earlier book. I purchased a reprint of the third edition and began translating bits and pieces to see how Moxon and Félibien compared. To my surprise, Félibien’s French wasn’t as difficult for me to deal with as Roubo’s. So I asked Brian Anderson to take a look. He concurred and is now engaged in translating the 30,000 or so words that Félibien wrote on woodworking.
We are still working out the details of the book and how we will make it, but rest assured we will create a nice edition that you will enjoy reading and will be affordable for all woodworkers. While we won’t be producing any special editions or leather-bound copies of this book, we will be selling an ebook version for customers who prefer that format.
For those of you who pay attention to our publishing schedule, 2014 will be a busy year. While we usually attempt to publish four titles per calendar year, we likely will publish six in 2014:
“Doormaking and Window-Making”
“Windsor Chairs: A Foundation” by Peter’s Galbert
“Princips de l’architecture…”
“To Make as Perfectly as Possible: Roubo on Furniture”
One last mystery book – to be revealed in the coming weeks.
Good thing I’m not teaching much in 2014. We have a lot of work ahead of us.
— Christopher Schwarz