Jean Louis Prévost

| 1 Comment

Louis Charles Ruotte (1754-ca. 1806), after a watercolor by Jean Louis Prévost (ca. 1760-after 1810), Vingt-neuvième cahier de fleurs (Twenty-Ninth Book of Flowers), ca. 1805. Stipple engraving with hand coloring. Graphic Arts (GA) French prints.

Princeton does not own a complete set of Prévost’s Collection des Fleurs et des Fruits (1805), which was published in twelve livraison or parts with four plates in each. We do have an index to the collection’s 48 plates and this exquisite botanical is not included. We assume our print is one of many that Prévost and Ruotte published separate from the 1805 Collection.

Born in Nointel, France, Prévost was associated with the botanical artist Gerrit van Spaendonck and exhibited at the Academie Royale, as well as the Academy of Saint-Luc. His designs can be found repeated on many fine works of French china, toiles, and chintzes.

Gordon Dunthorne, in his book, Flower and Fruit Prints of the 18th and Early 19th Centuries (GA Oversize 2005-0484Q), compliments Prévost:

A work of outstanding importance and interest, unlike anything published at this time, is Prevost’s Collection des Fleurs et des Fruits of 1805. This was issued for the specific purpose of maintaining the great French tradition for excellence of design and draughtsmanship. And it was Prevost’s hope that the forty eight plates of flowers and fruits would furnish patterns and inspiration to designers and manufacturers of china, toiles, chintzes, and other fabrics. Perhaps no other prints are more worthy of carrying on the tradition of Jean Baptiste and van Spaendonck than these fine examples of Prevost.

1 Comment


I have what I believe might be originals from the 1805 Collection which I bought at an auction several years ago. They depict two views of peaches/pears and grapes and grape leaves. On upper left corner of one print is "2 Cahier"(w/ french mark after the 2). On upper right corner is "Planche 7". The other is same except print says Planche 8.

They are framed behind glass (modern framing in Philadelphia). The quality of the paper is very textured - beautiful and not much yellowed. Coloring of the fruit has faded somewhat but does not diminish the beauty in my eye.

On the bottom left is "J.L. Prevost invenit". On the right is "Ruotte Direxil". (Note - There are no quotation marks on print). Could you help me determine the date these might be, whether or not they are from the 1805 collection (or a later one) and what value might be.

I thank you for your time and consideration.


G. Elizabeth Gross