INVENTION and DISCOVERY:
Printed Books from Fifteenth-Century Europe
An Exhibition at Bridwell Library, February 1 – May 3, 2010
|PRINTING SPREADS IN GERMANY||
10. [GERMAN BIBLE]. [Strasbourg: Johann Mentelin, before 27 June 1466].
Mentelin’s German Bible was the first edition of the Bible in a language other than Latin, and the first of seventeen German editions of the Bible published prior to Martin Luther’s translation. It preceded the first Italian Bible by five years, the first French and Spanish editions by a decade, and the first English edition by 69 years.
Originally owned by the Augustinian
Canons of Königsberg, Bavaria, Bridwell Library’s copy contains three fine
pen-and-ink miniatures: King David appears in the initial at the beginning
of III Kings; King Solomon is shown at the outset of Proverbs; and Moses
introduces the book of Deuteronomy. As a result of a
mistranslation by St. Jerome, who mistook the Hebrew “karan”
(“radiance”) for “keren” (“horns”) in Genesis 34:29, most images of
Moses from this period depicted him with two horns growing from his
forehead. Despite the fact that the “horns” are mentioned in this German
translation, the artist has shown the patriarch correctly, with rays of
light emanating from his head.
may not be published without the permission of Bridwell Library.