Katharine came into my office yesterday and handed me a book. She had been looking in the CMA’s library for something and had come across a 1942 French publication called Voitures & Attelages. It’s full of beautiful engravings, each showing a different type of carriage and its accompanying harness. The text, of course, is all in French, but I assume that it would tell us about the various vehicles and how each one would’ve been turned out in its heyday. Interestingly, in each image, the vehicle, harness, and livery are all in color, while the horses and backgrounds are nearly all done as simple black-and-white line drawings, so that the important details really stand out.

Because these images serve as such wonderful references, I’m going to share most of them here with you over the next couple of weeks.

We’ll start — today and tomorrow — with two rather elaborate vehicles. Today’s is an elaborate coach from the era of Louis XIV, who ruled France from 1643 to 1715.

.

.