Fortin was not an astronomer but an artisan, a globe maker for the French royal family. It is not known how or why he was commissioned to produce a revised edition of Flamsteed's star atlas, but it turned out to be a very successful enterprise. All of Flamsteed's twenty-six plates were re-engraved on a much smaller scale, so that they now measured only 23 by 18 cm. (One of Flamsteed's original plates, depicting Hydra, was a double-page folding plate, and in Fortin's editions it was divided in two, increasing the number of plates to twenty-seven). In the process, the engravers greatly improved the aesthetic appeal of Flamsteed's often awkward figures.
The illustration shows a detail of the Orion/Taurus region. When one compares the Orion/Taurus region to the corresponding region in the original 1729 Flamsteed atlas, we can see that Fortin's plates were aesthetically a great improvement.