Auction 140, Lot 882

"CCI [Crucifixion of William of Norwich]", Schedel, Hartmann

Subject: Incunabula

Period: 1493 (published)

Publication: Liber Chronicarum

Color: Hand Color

12 x 17 inches
30.5 x 43.2 cm

Hartmann Schedel's Nuremberg Chronicle (Liber Chronicarum) was published in two editions, Latin and German, both in 1493, appearing in print just before Christopher Columbus' discoveries completely re-shaped the European view of the World. This splendid work presented the history of the world in a pictorial encyclopedia with approximately 285 pages of text and 1,800 woodcut illustrations. Among these illustrations are views of towns and cities throughout Europe and the Near East. The majority of these views are entirely imaginary. In fact, 49 of the views are actually printed from the same group of 14 woodblocks. There are also 30 double-page views of cities with more realistic images. In addition to the topographical images, there are an enormous number of other subjects, including diagrams of the Creation, comets, family trees, portraits & biblical scenes. The text was compiled and edited by Hartmann Schedel, printed by Anton Koberger, with illustrations designed by Michael Wohlgemuth and Willem Pleydenwurff, who cut the woodblocks, probably with the assistance of their apprentice, Albrecht Durer.

Full sheet of German text with the woodcut illustration of the crucifixion of William of Norwich, a Christian boy supposedly ritually tortured and crucified by the Jews. This medieval myth was the first recorded instance of the blood libel in Europe against Jews. The balance of the verso contains portraits of Hildegard (Hildegardis), Gratian (Gracianus), bishop Peter Lombard, and Petrus Comestor. The recto depicts portraits of Conrad III (1093-1152), king of Germany, and Louis VII (c. 1121-1180), king of France.


Condition: B+

Watermarked paper with a few spots and marginal soiling.

Estimate: $200 - $250

Sold for: $120

Closed on 5/23/2012