Glorious Years is a celebration of the power of the printed image before photography. An exhibition of rare calendars, published in Paris in the 17th and 18th centuries, from their golden period under Louis XIV, through to the Revolution, when time itself was re-invented, with new ways of illustrating and naming the days and years.
Despite their popularity, these calendars (originally named ‘almanacs’) have not survived in great numbers. They were replaced annually and were easily damaged due to their large sizes. Depicting major events, from royal weddings, and births to victorious battles and peace treaties. Designed to inform and delight the public, while glorifying the king and his image.
These rare prints can be enjoyed as works of art and as important historical documents, revealing much about the social, political and artistic world of the Old Regime.
A number of bound pocketbook almanacs are also included in the exhibition. These small volumes were extremely popular towards the end of the 18thcentury. They vary hugely in content but all contain a calendar within.