'Le Geai Pare des Plumes du Paon' (The Jackdaw and the Peacocks)
Line block printed and pochoir illustration
From 'Fables de La Fontaine' by Jean de La Fontaine
Published by Berger-Levrault.
National Art Library Pressmark: 60.AA.214
The illustrations in this book have been hand-coloured using 'pochoir'. This ancient technique uses cut-out stencils to add colour to either drawn or printed line. The colours are applied one at a time using brushes of various sizes. Watercolour paints are used but a more opaque form in the early 20th century produced a thicker, richer layer of flat colour.
The book here is of fables by French writer Jean de La Fontaine (d. 1695). His fables included 240 poems and stories, which he derived from Greek mythology and familiar animal fables from Aesop. They were translated and imitated for the next two hundred years.