Nuremberg Chronicle leaf, woodcut of Carinthia,1493


An incunable leaf from the German edition of the Nuremberg Chronicle

 with a woodcut of Carinthia


Recto: 27 lines of text in Bastarda Schwabacher typeface printed by letterpress on laid, watermarked rag paper.  Below the text is a full width (195x225 mm.) woodcut of Carinthia (Kernten).


Verso:  66 lines of text in one column.


Printer:  Anton Koberger, Nuremberg


Date:  1493


Content:  The leaf is from The Addenda section of the Chronicle.   The second paragraph of the text  concerns Istria and reads:  The ancient teachers say that Istria is a part of Italy, and in it are situated the cities of Parentium and Pola. Justantinopolis is the capital. It borders on Italy in a recess of the Adriatic, extending into the sea in the form of an island. This region is mountainous and rocky. The ancients call it Albania. Pliny said that Istria borders on Liburnia. In consequence it is apparent that the Croatians came into the land of the Liburnians. The Istrians are now Wendic, but the cities on the seacoast speak Italian, and know both languages. The interior is in the possession of the Austrians. There also is the city of St. Veit, 1,000 stadia from Aquileia. In our times nothing memorable occurred in this country, although the Austrians and Venetians often warred with one another in consequence of boundary disputes.



Condition:   This leaf is in very good antiquarian condition with full margins all round and sharp impressions of the woodcuts. There is the expected edge browning, surface dirt from use and a couple of light spots.  The leaf is unconditionally guaranteed genuine.


Size:  of leaf approx. 475x330 mm. Text & woodcut area including heading: approx. 360x225 mm.  Presented in a museum quality mat, ready for framing.  Please note that packing and postage is invoiced separately.  Within Australia: $22.50.  Overseas: ask for quote.


Notes:  Author:  Hartmann Schedel (1440–1514)


Woodcut illustrators:  Michael Wolgemut and Wilhelm Pleydenwurff (with the assistance of their studio apprentices, including the young Albrecht Dürer).


Publisher and printer:  Anton Koberger, 1493, Nuremberg


One of the most famous early illustrated books, this ambitious text chronicles the history of the world, from the Creation to 1493. It is considered to be the first book to successfully integrate illustrations and text. The contents are divided into seven ages:


First age: from Creation to the Deluge

Second age: up to the birth of Abraham

Third age: up to King David

Fourth age: up to the Babylonian captivity

Fifth age: up to the birth of Jesus Christ

Sixth age: up to the present time (i.e. 1493)

Seventh age: outlook on the end of the world and the Last Judgement.


This monumental work is more than simply a fine example of the skills of early printers and illustrators, it also reflects the spirit of its time. While on the one hand it demonstrates the influence of Renaissance humanism, it also shows a society in the process of transformation from medieval to modern and from a scribal culture to a print culture. 


The Chronicle was originally published in Latin in 1493, and a German edition followed later that year. The Latin edition was printed using a typeface known as Antiqua Rotunda, while the German employed Bastarda Schwabacher. 


Scholars estimate that approximately 1400-1500 Latin and 700-1000 German copies were printed. 


References:  Goff S307, ISTC No. is00307000 Incunabula Short Title Catalogue, British Library.


Item No. PSE 067

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