BIBLE, in German

THE CATHOLIC GOSPELS MEANT TO COUNTER LUTHER’S BIBLE, IN VAIN

EMSER, Hieronymus (ed.). Das new Testament durch hochgelerten Hieronymum Emser seligen verteutscht.

Freiburg, durch Stephann Graff, 1551.

£4000

8vo. Text in Gothic, glosses in Italic. Title-page, ff. 16, 399 (=407), 7; lacking initial blank. Woodcut vignette on title showing Christ at the Column with the Instruments of the Passion relating to his flagellation and the editor Emser kneeling before him, with his coat of arms at his feet. Between Jesus and the theologian, a cartouche with a motto made up of two verses from the Book of Psalms (Nos 118 and 26): “iniquos odio habui, lege[m] aut[em] tua[m] dilexi. Odi[vi] eccla[siam] malignantium, etcu[m] impiis no[n] sedebo”. Several charming woodcuts by Anton Woensam of Worms throughout, at least one for each Gospel, illustrating the Evangelists, and any other epistolary section. Decorated initials in 3 sizes, the largest ones particularly beautiful. Capital spaces with guide-letter, many printed maniculae and side-notes. Printer’s mark on colophon; without the final blanks, a few marginal repairs in first quire, some waterstains at beginning and light spotting at end. Bound in contemporary blind-stamped pigskin over bevelled wooden boards, later metal clasps, remains of leather tabs (upper joint split at head, tail of spine slightly defective, some light stains). A very good, clean copy of this scarce edition.

Born of a prominent family at Ulm, Hieronymus Emser (1478-1527) was the most ardent literary opponent of Luther’s “pestilential heresy”, as Protestantism is defined in the present volume. George “The Bearded”, who was the very Catholic Duke of Saxony, encouraged the churchman and theologian Emser to undertake this German translation of the New Testament in order to counter the fast-spreading success of Luther’s vernacular Bible. The present book is an uncommon edition of Emser’s work, which was first published in 1527 (ABPC/RBH list just one copy in auction records). Emser compares Luther’s so-called “September Testament” (1522), which was his first translation of the Gospels from Greek, with the 1527 edition of the Reformer’s Bible, in order to prove the arbitrariness of his interpretation.

Anton Woensam was a German painter and graphic artist specialising in woodcuts. Forty-five paintings and over 500 woodcuts are attributed to him. He was a contemporary of the great artist Albrecht Dürer. Woesam’s woodcuts depict the four Evangelists (Merlo 1016, 338-341) the suffering Saviour, worshiped by the priest Emser (Merlo 1014, 330), and the authors of the Apostolic Letters.

Provenance: Bavaria, Rottenbuch Abbey (early inscription on title) – Schweinfurt, Otto Schäfer (pencil monogram on rear pastedown with library no.).

VD 16 B 4446.

ENGLISH BIBLE

The Holy Bible…[with] The Book of Common Prayer,…[with] The Whole Book of Psalms,…

London, Printed for George Eyre and Andrew Strahan, …, 1806; Oxford, Printed by W. Jackson and A. Hamilton, …, 1786; Oxford, Printed by W. Jackson and A. Hamilton, …, 1787.

£600

Large 4to. No pagination. Double-column text. Roman letter, little Italic. Bible bound with two earlier works: BCP with small vignette on title-page (arms of the University of Oxford) and final psalter. Very light marginal age toning, some spotting throughout, stain on verso of title-page and recto of second leaf. Front endpaper with unclear ms. ownership note: “Anne Themneys?…, August the 13th 1822 / This Book belongs to the…Room”. Handwritten initials on t-p: “C. K.” to the top and “K. Sep.tbr 16th 1806 T.” Marbled pastedowns and endpapers, contemporary green straightgrain morocco, triple fillet gilt along cover edges internally opposed to a blind-tooled fillet flanked by half flowers and triangles rolls, blind-stamped fleurons to corners, ribbon-twist roll gilt to foreedges and gilt lines of plumes and dots entwined to turn-ins. Large single fillet roll panels on centre of boards with quarter sun in splendour tool at inner corners, blind-tooled fillets flanked by half flowers and triangles alternated in a sequence repeated both inwardly and outwardly. Gilt title to spine, divided into six compartments with raised bands, gilt fillets and blind-stamped vine leaf meanders; decoration of blind-stamped floral motives (buds, branches and lilies), forming an eyeshaped oval, filled with dots and a central gilt circle, fashioned like a pupil and surrounded by four smaller gilt circles. Joints to the back cover, starting, a.e.g.

Darlow and Moule, 997.

GERMAN BIBLE [Luther Bible]

Biblia das ist: die gantze heylige schrifft Teutsch…

Frankfurt, Johann Saur, aus Wetter, bei haer. Christian I Egenolff, 1599.

£1850

Folio. ff. (xviii) 272, 178, 129 (i), a-c 6 A-Z6 Aa-Yy6 A-Z6 Aa-Ff6 Gg4 a-u 6 y 8 . Lacking title-page and two final leaves. Gothic letter, double-column. Portrait of Christoph Herzog (1515-1568), Duke of Wuerttemberg, within elaborate border enclosing his coat of arms on second leaf; two additional titles with elaborate borders in sections representing biblical episodes, introducing the Book of Prophets and the Gospels. Decorated initials, tailpieces, and numerous attractive large woodcut vignettes throughout (signed with initials “V.” and “S.”). Page edges ragged in the beginning and the end, with occasional loss of marginal text. Repairs to outer margin of the initial three leaves and most leaves between ff. 136-178 of the Old Testament. Small tape repairs to reinforce tears on b6 (second quire). From leaf 116 of the Gospels onwards, margins damaged and rather worn. Some light marginal dampstaining and spotting throughout. Bound in contemporary blind-tooled German pigskin, very darkened, slightly wormed, ragged and rubbed to edges, with decorative rolls of floral motives, remains of ties. Interestingly and abundantly annotated in a C18th German hand on pastedowns and flyleaves. Overall very worn with many flaws affecting text and partial cropping of printed marginal references through a substantial part of the book. Plenty of attractive large illustrations.

VD16 B 2834.

BIBLIA ITALICA

BIBLE. Bibia Volgare, la quale in se contiene i sacrosanti libri del vecchio e del nuovo testamento:…

Venice, Appresso Andrea Muschio, 1566.

£5000

4to, ff. (xxv) 652. Roman letter, some Italic. Historiated initials, numerous charming and unusual woodcuts throughout (approximatively 340, mainly 7.5×5 plus a few nearly full-page size), sided by lateral decorative borders. Title-page detached and laid down on new paper, woodcut vignette of Saint Gerome penitent with scribble of a galero (cardinal’s hat) on it, French inscription dated “Londres, 1795” recalling a couplet of Ovid’s Tristia (I, 5, vv. 25-26: Scilicet ut fulvum pectator in ignibus aurum, / Tempore sic duro est inspicienda fides): “L’or s’éprouve par le feu, et le vrai ami, dans l’adversité”; early note in Italian at foot of t-p: “Tasso è morto nel MDXCV”, with reference to the poet Torquato Tasso’s death. Slightly trimmed, first three quires a little browned, worn, and soiled, as well as the final leaves, several repairs to gathering A (the beginning of Genesis). Some minimal worming towards beginning in centre of page affecting letters; some marginal wormholes through gutters and outer margins towards the end. leaf Aa1 with paper flaw affecting a woodcut and some letters. Bound in C18th vellum over boards, fragile joints, lightly rubbed to corners of covers and spine caps, gilt-tooled red morocco label to spine, a.e.r.. A nice copy notwithstanding the faults.

As one learns from the printer’s introductory letter to the reader, this quarto edition of the Vernacular translation of Saint Jerome’s Vulgate was issued with the approval of the Father Inquisitor Adriano from Venice, Bishop of Capodistria. Andrea Muschio tells he felt the need of publishing the Holy Scriptures since too long a time had passed from the latest appearance of this crucial text of Christianity, the most useful to human salvation. The quarto format, he adds, allows one to make this bible portable and handy. After this “avis au lecteur”, it follows Jerome’s prologue to the bible, which was translated by the biblical scholar Niccolò Malermi (1422-81). Malermi and his collaborators, Lorenzo from Venice and Girolamo Squarciafico, were the first to translate the Vulgate from Latin into Italian vernacular. The text includes the Old and New Testament and the letter of Saint Paul. The present work is one of the latest C16th editions of Malermi’s translation, which appeared with the title “Bibbia dignamente vulgarizzata per il clarissimo religioso duon Nicolao Malermi Veneziano et dil Monasterio de Santo Michele di Lemo Abbate dignissimo” in two volumes (Venice, Vandelino da Spira, 1471; then republished several times in Venice from Gabriele di Piero, 1477; Antonio Miscomini, 1478; Ottaviano Scoto, 1481; Andrea Paltasichi, 1484; Tommaso Trevisano, 1487; Lucantonio Giunta, 1490, 1492, 1494, 1502, 1507; Guglielmo Anima Mia, 1493; Giorgio Rusconi, 1517; Lazzaro Soardi and Bernardino Benali, 1517; Stefano Nicolini da Sabio, 1524; Elisabetta Rusconi, 1525; Guglielmo Fontaneto and Melchiorre Sossa, 1532; Bernardino Bindoni, 1535, 1541, 1544; Aurelio Pinzi, 1553; Andrea Muschio, 1566; Gerolamo Scoto, 1567). The 1490’s Giunta edition was illustrated with 386 woodcuts attributed to an artist known as the Master of the Pico della Mirandola Pliny, after his most famous illuminated manuscript. A second miniaturist, known as the Master of the Rimini Ovid, may be responsible for some of the other narrative vignettes. The vignettes of these masters were then reused and re-stylised in order to illustrate the numerous above-mentioned editions of this bible, of which the present copy is a remarkable example.

Not in Darlow and Moule. EDIT 16 5777; USTC 804447

BIBLIA LATINA

BIBLE. Biblia sacra, quae praeter antiquae latinae versionis necessaria emendationem, & difficiliorum locorum succinctam explicationem, (ut plurimum ex beatae recordationis viri, D. D. Lucae Osiandri, &c. Andreae Parentis, Commentariis Biblicis depromptam)…

Frankfurt am Main, Typis Matthiae Beckeri…, 1611.

£3250

Folio, ff. (vi = title page, portrait and preface), 286 (Old Testament), 110 (Prophets), 101 (New Testament), (xxv = indexes), ):(6 a-4a4 4b6 a-3G4 3H6. Roman and Italic letter. Decorated initials, tailpieces, pages ruled in black, central double-column text, each column with two side narrower rows of gloss and references, diagrams and chronological and genealogical tables. Beautiful title in compartments, within portico, with Moses and Aaron, the four Evangelists to the corners, a scene of Adam, Eve and God in the Garden of Eden, to the top, and the Nativity at foot. The following leaf, the portrait of Frederick Duke of Württemberg-Teck by Jacob Heyden, within an architectural border with personification of Justice and Prudence, his coat of arms to the top, declamatory verses at foot. The very occasional early ink underlining, some light soiling and a few marginal wormholes. In a contemporary German Protestant pigskin binding with original red morocco label and gilt lettering to spine with raised bands. In the centre of the front board, a stamped portrait of Luther with an open book in his hands and underneath the Latin sentence “Nosse cupis faciem Lutheri hanc / cerne tabellam si mentem libr / os consule certus eris”, which can loosely be translated as “You want to know the face of Luther, look at this picture; if his mind, be sure to read his books”. Lower corner of the board a little browned. Compartments with blind-tooled motives and stamped profiles of human figures, perhaps saints, alternating with floral elements and shields, or coat of arms, in a grotesque-like style. Central panel on the rear board somewhat worn and difficultly interpretable, but possibly shows four icons of saints. Swirling marbled pastedowns. This fine volume is perfect with the exception of the last few leaves with dampstained margins, a.e.r.

Fourth edition of this famous emended and commented version of the Vulgate, which was first published in 1522 with the revision and corrections of Andreas Osiander (1498-1552); today also known as the Osiander bible. A humanist, reformer, and theologian, Osiander embodied the various circles in which many Protestants ran, but also the complicated relationship between those various circles that led to tensions and divisions within the Reformation. A trained humanist, he mastered Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, he studied the Jewish Kabbalah and composed a harmony of the Gospels. He also became an early supporter of Luther’s reforms. The present copy not only shows Andreas’s commentary and glosses, but these were also enriched and expanded by his son Lucas the Elder (1534-1604). Lucas was a German pastor of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Württemberg and a composer of Lutheran church music.

Not in Darlow and Moule.

BIBLIA GERMANICA

GERMAN BIBLE. Biblia Sacra, das ist Die gantze H. Schrifft Alten und Newen Testaments.

Köln, In verlegung Michael Dehmen und Wittib Constantini Munichs, 1666.

£2000

8vo, pp. (lxiv = title page + table of contents), 844 (Old Testament), a-3f8 3g6; pp. 368 (Prophets), a-z8; pp. 324 (New Testament), 2a-2y8 2×2; pp. 52 (Apocrypha), *-3*8 4*2. Gothic letter, a little Italic. Double column, framed text, ruled in black, with side rows for notes; Apocrypha in single column. Decorated initials, capital spaces with guide-letters, head and tailpieces. Title within architectonical border in compartments: Moses and Salomon to the sides; six biblical scenes at head of page (from left to right: Creation, Adam and Eve, Original Sin, Binding of Isaac, Moses receives the Law on Sinai, Christ Pantocrator) with putti holding cartouches with bible verse to the very top: “vidit Deus cuncta quae fecerat, et erant valde bona, Gen. I”; at foot, central image of Crucifixion and “haurietis aquas de fontibus Salvatoris Isa. 12” inscribed around in circle. The four Evangelists while writing the Gospels (Luke and Marc to the left, Matthew and John to the right) and imprint in a large gothic-style cartouche at foot with motto “labore et costantia” in cartouche entwined with architectural compass. In clean contemporary German blind-tooled pigskin over wooden boards, date “1679” stamped in black to top of front board, with original brass clasps and catches. At centre of boards within panels, large black-ink oval coat of arms of the Austrian Cardinal Maximilian Gandolph von Künburg (1622-1687) with date of his ordainment, “1668”, inscribed in it. Early ms. note on front pastedown: “Collegiatum in Seekirchen” and modern stamp of the collegiate library of Seekirchen (Austria) on verso of t-p. An excellent, fine copy and extremely well-preserved. A.e.r.

Second edition of this Catholic bible in German language, which was translated by Kaspar Ulenberg (1549–1617). Ulenberg was a Catholic convert and a prolific theological writer, who studied theology at Wittenberg. While studying Luther’s writings there, his first doubts as to the truth of the Lutheran doctrines were awakened, and were then increased by hearing the disputes between the Protestant theologians and by the appearance of Calvinism in Saxony. One day he was then sent by his family to Cologne to convert to Protestantism a relative of his who had become Catholic. After accomplishing this task he remained in Cologne, where, through some Catholic friendships, he had an opportunity of becoming acquainted with Catholic life and teaching. In 1572 he became a Catholic, and soon afterwards, upon obtaining degrees in philosophy at the University of Cologne, he laboured zealously by preaching and catechetical exercises, and made many conversions.

 This work is his last and most important literary achievement, which he began around 1614 at the request of the Archbishop and Elector of Cologne, Ferdinand Duke of Bavaria, and finished shortly before his death. The first edition appeared at Cologne in 1630; eleven other editions were published at Cologne up to 1747, and eleven more at Nuremberg, Bamberg, Frankfort, and Vienna. The present work bears the armorial shield of the Austrian Cardinal Maximilian Gandolph von Künburg (1622-1687), who was nephew to the famous Cardinal Wolfgang Hanibal von Schrattenbach. Maximilian established the monastery of Seekirchen am Wallersee in Austria, a town in the Salzburg lake district, in 1679 and one can suppose this bible was donated by him to the collegiate library of the monastery, since in bears the date of foundation stamped on its front cover.

Not in Darlow-Moule and the bibles catalogue of the Württembergische Landesbibliothek, Stuttgart. This Bible, first published in 1630, “far outstripped all previous Catholic translations in terms of both greater correctness and linguistic versatility” (Wetzer-W., XII, 188).