Serment du Jeu de Paume a Versailles le 19 Juin 1789.
A Paris chez Decrouan Editeur, Rue de Rempart, 4, vis-a-vis le Theatre Francais [n.d., c.1850].
Engraving. 630 x 830mm. Tatty extremities, some foxing.
France’s violent transition from the ancien regime that had nurtured tennis (le jeu de paume) to the anti-aristocratic revolution began with the takeover of a tennis court. In June 1789, following a month-long deadlock in the States-General over constitutional reform at the royal palace of Versailles, the frustrated Third Estate (the commons), which had been locked out from the formal meeting place by King Louis XVI, declared itself a National Assembly, took over a royal tennis court, and on June 20th took an oath (serment) not to disperse till their demands were met. Three weeks later, on July 14th, a Paris mob attacked the Bastille prison. A nineteenth century impression of the plate first published by Nicolas Ponce in 1792.
[Ref: 7778] £280.00