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Liber chronicarum
Nuremberg Anton Koberger for Sebald Schreyer and Sebastian Kammermeister 1493 - First Edition of the Nuremberg Chronicle [SCHEDEL, Hartmann. Liber chronicarum. Nuremberg: Anton Koberger for Sebald Schreyer and Sebastian Kammermeister, 12 July 1493]. First edition of the Nuremberg Chronicle, preceding the German language edition (23 December 1493) by just over five months. Large folio (16 1/4 x 11 1/2 inches; 415 x 290 mm.). 324 leaves [1], [19, table], CCLXVI, [5], CCLXVII-CCXCIX, [1, colophon] leaves. This copy contains the three numbered leaves CCLVIIII, CCLX, and CCLXI, blank except for headlines, and the five additional unnumbered leaves containing the description of Poland, De Sarmacia regione, and the laudatory verse on Maximilian, bound between leaves CCLXVI and CCLXVII. Lacking the blank leaf following the De Sarmacia regione and the two final blank leaves. Gothic type, sixty-four lines plus headline. Table and parts of the text in double columns. Woodcut title and 1,809 woodcut illustrations, of which 1,164 are repeats, from 645 blocks (Sydney Cockerell’s count in Some German Woodcuts of the Fifteenth Century (Hammersmith: Kelmscott Press, 1897), pp. 35-36) by Michael Wolgemut, Wilhelm Pleydenwurff, and their workshop, including (supposedly) the young Albrecht Dürer, including double-page maps of the world and of Europe. The portrait of Pope Joan ("Johannes Septimus," verso of leaf CLXIX), usually missing, is present and unmutilated. With numerous rubricated initials. One large (fourteen-line) initial supplied in blue and red to first line of folio I. Other large (four-, six-, seven-, and eight-line) initials in red, mainly in "table." Some underlining and paragraph marks supplied in red. Additionally, every single woodcut has been beautifully hand-colored in a later hand. Bound in contemporary, possibly remboitage binding. Full blindstamped pigskin over thick wooden boards. With brass corner and central devices on front and back boards. With leather straps and brass clasps, all intact. Later pastedowns out of sheet music and free endpapers out of a different, early incunable. Top edge of outer hinge with some minor cracking, but holding firm. A bit of rubbing and soiling to covers. Interior generally clean and crisp, pages have been cleaned. Thick paper. Title-page with some minor professional repairs, and bound in on a stub. Leaf [1] of table, with some professional repairs. Leaves 12, 162, 186, 205, and 277 with top-edge trimmed close, just affecting headline. Some toning to a few leaves, namely leaves 125-126, 131-136 and 280-286. Minor foxing to leaf 254. Leaf 286 with a small paper flaw and hole, just affecting about 4 letters on the recto, and a minor part of woodcut on verso. Towards the end there are some tiny worm holes affecting some leaves, most of which have been professionally and almost invisibly repaired and filled. The map of Europe trimmed slightly at sides, just barely affecting the printing matter. Overall, a fine and handsome copy. The most extensively illustrated book of the fifteenth century. The artists, Michael Wolgemut, the well-known teacher of Albrecht Dürer, and his stepson, Wilhelm Pleydenwurff, are mentioned in the colophon. The woodcuts comprise religious subjects from the Old and New Testament, classical and medieval history, and a large series of city views (including Augsburg, Bamberg, Basel, Cologne, Nuremberg, Rome, Ulm, Vienna), as well as a double-page map of Europe and a large Ptolemaic world map. The text is a year-by-year account of notable events in world history from the creation down to the year of publication, including the invention of printing at Mainz, the exploration of the Atlantic and of Africa, as well as references to the game of chess, and to medical curiosities, including what is believed to be the first depiction of Siamese twins. The passage relating to the alleged discovery of America in 1483 by Martin Behaim and Jacobus Canus appears on the verso of leaf CCXC. BMC II, p. 437. Fairfax Murray, German, 394. Goff S-307. Hain 14508*. Harrisse [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Heritage Book Shop, ABAA]
Last Found On: 2017-12-01           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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