Allain Manesson Mallet 1630-1706 French military engineer who served for a time with the Portuguese army. He later returned to France, becoming a "master of mathematics" at the court of Louis XIV. Mallet's five-volume description of the world contains numerous maps, views, portraits, and illustrations such as the one had served as an engineer and master sergeant of artillery in the Portuguese army and later became an instructor in mathematics to the pages at the Royal Stables of Louis XIV. He published three thoroughly-illustrated works: La Description de l'Univers (Paris, 1683) Géometrie Pratique(Paris, 1702). Les Travaux de Mars, ou l'Art de la Guerre. Divisé en Trois Parties. La premiere, enseigne la Methode de fortifier toutes sortes de Places Regulieres & Irregulieres. La seconde explique leurs Constructions, selon les plus fameux Auteurs, qui ont traité ju(1685-1684) "Having observed how marvelously educational illustrations can be in mathematical books, especially in depicting theoretical problems... I have striven to add to this second edition a quantity of new and very properly engraved plates." He further points out in the first chapter that he has added a very great deal of new and useful material to this edition.As is declared in the tile, this work encompasses the full range of military activity, with a strong emphasis on the siting, design, and construction of fortresses, citadels, and fortified towns. The text and illustrations range from the basic equipment of an ordinary soldier to the storming of a city. Of great importance is the fact that almost every plate contains a view of a town or a castle or engineers and soldiers going about their business or even a simple genre scene, sometimes being virtually allegorical. The richness of imagery in these plates is altogether fascinating and merits close study.