Vue d'une Partie de la Ville de Lion...
FRANÇOIS POILLY / FRANÇOIS CLERIC
A beautiful and rare map of the city of the Lyon, France. This majestic view of one of France’s premiere cities, was dedicated to Monseigneur François de Neuville, the second Duc de Villeroy. The Duc de Villeroy, was from a noble family of Lyon, who had been awarded the honorific title of Maréchal de France in 1693, a distinction often given to military generals who have demonstrated great achievements.
The Duc de Villeroy, who was a childhood friend of Louis the XIV, became a member of the inner circle at the court of this French King. During the reign of Louis XIV, the Duc de Villeroy was involved in different military campaigns such as those concerning of the War of the Grand Alliance, one of the first truly global conflicts that engaged multiple theatres of war on different continents, and those of the War of the Spanish Succession.
However, following the death of Louis XIV in 1715, the Duc de Villeroy was made governor of the young King Louis XV during the regency of the Duke of Orléans, the young King’s uncle. The Duc de Villeroy would eventually fall out of favour with the Regent, and was exiled in 1722 from court and returned to his ancestral lands at Neuville near Lyon. His exiled proved short lived as he was restored to court upon the accession of Louis XV to the throne the following year.
The city view of Lyon by Poilly and Cleric thus offers a great depiction of the city when the Duc the Villeroy was at his apogee in terms of his influence at court and part of the inner circle of the regency of the Duc d’Orleans. The city view is both beautifully adorned and provides informative geographic details of the bustling community. This map is a rare find and is a work of beautiful craftsmanship.