L’art de faire des garçons, ou nouveau tableau de l’amour conjugal. Par M***, docteur en médecine de l’Université de Montpellier.

‘Londres’ [Paris?], 1779.

12mo, pp. xxii, [2 (blank)], 188; engraved headpieces; some gatherings uniformly heavily browned, especially prelims, but otherwise, aside from occasional spotting, largely clean; in contemporary patterned wrappers, paper label on spine with title in ink, and ownership inscription ‘del Conte Guarnieri’ on front paste-down; spine somewhat worn, but still an attractive copy.


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L’art de faire des garçons, ou nouveau tableau de l’amour conjugal. Par M***, docteur en médecine de l’Université de Montpellier.

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Uncommon later edition, probably printed in Paris but bound in Italy, of this popular guide to the production of boys, and to procreation and sex more broadly by the French-Italian writer, physician, and librarian Michel Coltelli (1684–1753, better known as Procope-Couteaux). Coltelli was the son of the founder of the Café Procope in Paris, established in 1686 and still going strong (albeit with a five-decade hiatus from the 1870s); he trained as a doctor, before working as librarian to the Paris medical faculty. In this, his best-known work, he attempts to dress in a coat of science his enthusiastically graphic descriptions of, and opinions on, sex, inspired by Maupertuis’ Venus physique; although the book does address the theory of generation, as well as offering an explanation for the birth of ‘monstres’, it is best known for its final chapter, on the causes of sexual pleasure.

Gay-Lemonnier I, 281; of this edition, OCLC records four copies outside continental Europe, at Cambridge, Manchester, Chicago, and the College of Physicians of Philadelphia.

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