Alain Manesson-Mallet

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Alain Manesson Mallet

Alain [Allain] Manesson Mallet (* 1630 in Paris , † 1706 ibid) was a French cartographer and engineer .

Live and act

Title copper of the anonymous second German-language edition by Johann Gottfried Gregorii by Johann Adam Jung, Frankfurt 1719, sc. Johann Jacob Vogel
Copper engraving of the Dalai Lama or Grand Lama from the description of the whole world circle 1719

Manesson Mallet was initially a soldier and engineer in the Portuguese army and after his return to France made a career in the army of Louis XIV. He became "Maître de Mathématiques" and inspector of the fortifications. As an engineer and fortress builder, he published Les Travaux de Mars ou l'Art de la Guerre , Paris 1671; German war work or new fortress construction , Amsterdam 1672.

His main work, Description de L'Univers , appeared in five volumes in Paris in 1683, the first German edition of the cosmography Description of the Whole World of Kreysses in Frankfurt 1684–1685 by the important publisher Johann David Zunner. The page-court master and math teacher at the court of the Sun King had worked on it for more than ten years. The monumental work contains a compilation of the astronomical and geographical knowledge of his time, which Manesson Mallet uniquely combined with everyday and genre scenes in his self-made engravings .

Between 1716 and 1719 the German geographer and polymath Johann Gottfried Gregorii comprehensively revised this great description of the world and published the cosmography of Manesson Mallet as the second German edition anonymously by the publisher Johann Adam Jung (Zunners Erben) in Frankfurt. The 650 re-engraved copperplate engravings, supplemented by portraits of current rulers (e.g. Charles VI. And George I ), reflect the geographic knowledge of the time with world views, maps, city and genre views, nationalities and sights. Gregorii used some of Manesson Mallet's illustrations as templates for his ATLAS PORTATILIS (1717) and the political-geographical journal Remarquable Curiosa (1715–1727).

His last major work, the Géométrie pratique in four volumes , appeared in Paris in 1702 : geometric elements, trigonometry , planimetry and stereometry as well as their uses, etc. a. for architecture and garden architecture.


  • Description of the whole world circle. Understanding different ideas of the world, general and special land charts of the old and new description of the earth. In five parts.
    • Fourth part. Which contains in itself the Old and New Europe. Zunner, Frankfurt am Mayn 1685. ( digitized version )
    • Fifth part. Which in itself contains the further continuation of the Old and New Europe. Zunner, Frankfurt am Mayn 1685. ( digitized version )
  • Description of the whole world circle. In addition to general and special country charts of the Kayserthuens, kingdoms, principalities, provinces, islands and states of the Earth-Kreyses, from the old and new geography. 5 volumes, Jung, Franckfurt am Mayn 1719.
    • Volume 1: What about the Sphaera prepared by art, artificial and natural celestial and earth spheres, stars, planets, air symbols and so on 1719 ( digitized version )
    • Volume 2: Wherein the old and new Asia. 1719 ( digitized version )
    • Volume 3: From the old and the new Africa. 1719 ( digitized version )
    • Volume 4: From the old and the new Europe. 1719 ( digitized version )


  • Émilie d'Orgeix: Alain Manesson Mallet (1630–1706). Portrait d'un ingénieur militaire dans le sillage de Vauban , Comité Français de Cartographie, CFC 195, March 2008 ( Online ; PDF; 5.3 MB)
  • Michael Hübner: Architectura von Vestungen: Early Modern Fortification Literature in the Francke Foundations Halle 2010

Web links

Commons : Alain Manesson-Mallet  - Collection of Images, Videos and Audio Files

Individual evidence

  1. [Gregorii, Johann Gottfried] anonymous editor, Des famous Königlichen Geographi HERRN Allain Manesson Mallets description of the whole world circle ... , Frankfurt 1719, publ. Jung, Johann Adam, preface
  2. MELISSANTES, GEOGRAPHIA NOVISSIMA… , 5th ed. Frankfurt and Leipzig 1729, part 2, preface
  3. ^ Carsten Berndt, MELISSANTES - A Thuringian polyhistor and his job descriptions in the 18th century; Life and work of Johann Gottfried Gregorii (1685–1770) as a contribution to the history of geography, cartography, genealogy, psychology, pedagogy and professional studies in Germany; [A Thuringian geographer and universal scholar (1685–1770)] , 3rd edition, Rockstuhl, Bad Langensalza 2015, ISBN 978-3-86777-166-5 . Pp. 63-69, pp. 171-173
  4. Volker R. Remmert : Antiquity, nobility, and utility: picturing the Early Modern mathematical sciences , in: Eleanor Robson , Jacqueline Stedall (Ed.): The Oxford Handbook of the History of Mathematics , Oxford University Press, 2008, ISBN 0191607444 , P. 555 f. ( GoogleBooks )