The Offer

 

This Biblical Archives offer is of ONE original hand coloured illustrated leaf from the Eleventh High German Bible published by Johann Schönsperger in May 1487. This offer comes with a Certificate of Historicity. Measurements: approx. 11 3/4"x 8 1/4". Location: 3.8a

Biblical Art

 

Biblical Art

 

The artistic adornment of the Bible is an important aspect of the Biblical tradition. We often speak of the Living Word, the written Word and the spoken Word but have you ever considered the value of the visual Word of God? By this it is meant images conveying the essential message of the Bible for those who could not read. The walls and ceilings of ancient churches were beautified with scenes of Biblical stories informing those for whom the Word of God was a mystery of the essence of eternal truths. The advent of the printing press in 1455 introduced the written word to millions who had never before had the opportunity to learn to read for themselves. Books became affordable and the quest for knowledge the highest pursuit. But for those who could not read the picture/illustration still remained the main avenue to unlocking the mysteries of God's word.

 

The German Bible

 

Prior to Martin Luther's new translation of the Bible published in 1534 there were eighteen German Bibles that appeared in Germany between 1466 and 1522. The pioneer printer, Johannes Gutenberg used the Latin translation (Vulgate), which was the accepted Bible of the Church, for his Gutenberg Bible. In just a short time, a decade only, there was a demand from both the clergy and the middle-classes for a vernacular Bible in German.

 

Hans Bämler

 

The tradition of illustrating Bibles dates back a thousand years before Johann Schönsperger commissioned the popular artisan Hans Bämler, who incidentally was his father-in-law, to a make a new set of illustrations for what we now know was the eleventh High German Bible to be printed prior to Luther's new translation. It appears Bämler took inspiration for some of his illustrations from an earlier Koberger Bible, perhaps a 1483 edition. 

Hans Bämler was a multi-talented craftsman who became an important figure in the life of Augsburg, Germany in the 15th century. He is, "mentioned in Augsburgian city records from 1453 as a scribe and from 1477 as a printer. He appears to have begun his career as an illuminator and calligrapher [...]. He probably learned the art of print-making in the shop of Gunther Zainer [the first printer in Augsburg]. The first printed book by Bämler appeared in April 1472, and the first illustrated printed book from his workshop in September 1473. [...] Approximately half of the books printed in his printing office were illustrated with woodcuts or other decorative elements. He belonged to the guild of painters, glassmakers, woodcut-makers and goldbeaters, and eventually reached a high position within the guild. His printing activity ceased in 1495". Wikipedia

 

Johann Schönsperger

 

Johann Schönsperger set up a print shop in 1481 with the goldsmith Thomas Rüger and worked closely with his stepfather Johann Bämler. The company, along with other printers from Augsburg, was able to dominate the book market for German literature in Augsburg between 1480 and 1500. In 1507 Schönsperger went bankrupt and did not recover financially. In 1508 he probably became the secret printer of Emperor Maximilian I through Konrad Peutinger. 

 

Text

 

Job 1

 

[1] There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. [2] And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters. [3] His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east. [4] And his sons went and feasted in their houses, every one his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them. [5] And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually. [6] Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them. [7] And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. [8] And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? [9] Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought? [10] Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. [11] But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. [12] And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD. [13] And there was a day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house: [14] And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them: [15] And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [16] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [17] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [18] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house: [19] And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. [20] Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped, [21] And said, Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD. [22] In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

 

The Offer

 

This Biblical Archives offer is of ONE original hand coloured illustrated leaf from the Eleventh High German Bible published by Johann Schönsperger in May 1487. This offer comes with a Certificate of Historicity. Measurements: approx. 11 3/4"x 8 1/4". Location: 3.8a

1487 Eleventh High German Bible Job 1

$395.00Price
  • Some Bible leaves are hard to look at and others look as new as the day they left the press. The condition of a particular Bible  leaf reflects its history and is not an indication of its true value. Perfect leaves are ones that have seen little or no use over the centuries in contrast to those that are scarred by the ravages of time. Unblemished leaves are unloved leaves because they have had little contact with sinners. Imperfect leaves tell a story, some are torn and ripped and warn away by excessive use while other's have burns or worm holes and still others are water stained by flood and sometimes even tears. Each ugly mark or stain is in fact a beautiful witness to the Word of God, which “… liveth and abideth forever.” The basis for pricing our Biblical leaves and other artefacts is based on: 1) the age 2) the rarity of the object 3) the popularity of the text and finally 4) the condition. All printed and manuscript leaves are sold as is. We offer a 30 day refund upon receipt of the leaf/object in the same pre-sale condition. Buyer pays for retrun shipping. All objects and leaves are photographed prior to being shipped.