21 results in English
Trevelyon Miscellany, 1608
Thomas Trevilian, or Trevelyon, a London craftsman of whom little is known, created his miscellany in 1608 when he was about the age of 60. The bulky manuscript of 290 double-sided folios contains texts and images appropriated from books, woodcuts, and engravings of his day. Part one of the manuscript (leaves 3–36) consists of historical and practical information: a time line; an illustrated calendar; moralizing proverbs; a series of computational tables and astronomical diagrams; lists of families linked to William the Conqueror; distances between London and cities around the ...
Emblems: With Many Images from Ancient Works; by Ján Sambucus of Tyrnavia in Pannonia
Emblemata: Cvm Aliqvot Nvmmis Antiqvi Operis (Emblems: with many images from ancient works) is by the notable Slovak poet, polymath, publisher, collector, and university professor Ján Sambucus (also known as János Zsámboki, 1531−84). Born in Trnava (also referred to as Tyrnavia) in western Slovakia, Sambucus was considered to be the outstanding humanistic personality of Central Europe. He maintained contacts with many European scholars, with whom he collaborated in his publishing and collecting activities and his historical research. A substantial part of his life was spent at the imperial court ...
Contributed by Slovak National Library
Ramayana
The oral tradition of the Burmese Ramayana story can be traced as far back as the reign of King Anawrahta (active 1044−77), the founder of the first Burmese empire. The story was transmitted orally from generation to generation before being written down in prose and verse and as a drama. The earliest known written Burmese version of the Ramayana is Rama Thagyin (Songs from the Ramayana), compiled by U Aung Phyo in 1775. A three-volume copy of the Rama story called Rama vatthu was written on palm leaf in ...
Contributed by The British Library
Europe, A Prophecy
The English poet, illustrator, and engraver William Blake (1757–1827) first published Europe, A Prophecy in 1794, one year after the appearance of his America, A Prophecy. In both books, Blake attempted to discern the pattern behind human history, and in particular in the momentous events occurring on both sides of Atlantic between the end of the American Revolution in 1783 and the outbreak of war between France and Great Britain in 1793. At first an enthusiast for the French Revolution, Blake saw a world of deprivation and misery emerging ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Adam and Eve in Paradise
Lucas Cranach, the Elder (1472-1553) was a leading artist of the German Renaissance. He served as court painter at Wittenberg to Frederick the Wise of Saxony and was a friend and advocate of Martin Luther, the leader of the Protestant Reformation. He was also a master printmaker. This 1509 woodcut depicts Adam and Eve beneath an apple tree, surrounded by animals, with Eve being tempted by the serpent. Man’s fall from grace was a popular theme in the Reformation era. Between 1510 and 1540 Cranach painted Adam and Eve ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Small Passion. The Expulsion from Paradise
Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) is generally considered Germany’s greatest artist. In addition to being one of the monumental figures in the history of Western printmaking, he was a painter and wrote important early works of artistic theory dealing with such topics as geometry, perspective, and the measurements of the human body. Much of his work was religious. From his early 20s until his death at the age of 57, Dürer worked on at least six different versions of the Passion--the story of Christ's suffering between the Last Supper and ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Encyclopedic Manuscript Containing Allegorical and Medical Drawings
In the Middle Ages, medicine was very much intertwined with astrology and other nonscientific superstitions. This manuscript on vellum, produced in southern Germany around 1410, contains pen and ink drawings with explanatory texts in German and Latin. The first drawing shows the earth and seven planets. It is followed by Zodiac-man, a naked man shown with the 12 signs of the zodiac, each relating to a specific part of the body. Next are four bloodletting charts of the human body. Such bleeding charts or calendars were widely used in this ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Book of the City of Ladies
Christine de Pisan (circa 1364–1430) was born in Italy and came to France at the age of four with her father. Arguably the first woman in Europe to earn a living as an author, she is widely regarded as an early feminist who spoke out for the rights of women and espoused female achievement. She wrote poems and prose texts that were often allegorical and philosophical and that reflected her own original and engaged personality. She prepared the books with the aid of copyists and illuminators and offered them ...
Can You Drive a Car? Will You Drive One in France? Immediate Service at the Front!
This World War I poster shows the proud figure of Liberty strongly fending off Death as she protects a wounded soldier, who rests on the back of a vehicle. It was used to recruit American ambulance drivers for service at the front in France. The American Field Service (AFS) originated in 1914, shortly after the outbreak of war, when young Americans living in Paris began volunteering to drive ambulances at the American Hospital of Paris. Members of the AFS were present at every major battle in France and carried more ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Dawn after Darkness!
This 1918 poster is one of a series of six lithographs by artist Alexander Oscar Levy (1881–1934) made toward the end of World War I. These lithographs celebrated the U.S. victory and commemorated the sacrifices made by the U.S. armed forces during the war. This poster shows the allegorical figure of Liberty leading troops to victory; in the foreground are German prisoners of war and refugees. The text of a separate poster advertising the set of prints declared: “This tribute to our American heroes who made the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Danger of Bolshevism
Following the Bolshevik (i.e., Communist) takeover of Russia in November 1917, it was widely thought that other European countries might fall to the communists. Seeking to capitalize on widespread economic misery in the aftermath of the German defeat in World War I, the Communist Party of Germany attempted several unsuccessful takeovers of the country in 1919–21. This 1919 poster warns Germans about the danger of a communist coup. It shows a skeleton wrapped in a black cloak with a bloody knife held in its teeth. In the background ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Dr. Uncle Sam is Now in Charge of Our Industrial Troubles
This World War I poster touts the role of the federal government in promoting industrial cooperation by portraying Uncle Sam as a doctor, who administers the medicine of "Co-operation" to patients identified as "Wage Earner" and "Wage Payer," as the quack doctor of "Agitation" leaves and a nurse, "The Public," sweeps up “Agitator’s Acid,” “Legislative Ether,” and “Spirits of Discontent.” A tiny bird comments, "A real doctor on the job now!" The text further explains that the prescription, “a Victory Tonic, called Co-operation,” will cure strife and win the ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Carry the 'Ideal' Waterman Pen, the Weapon of Peace
This 1919 advertisement for the “Ideal” Waterman pen features a woman in classical garb holding a giant fountain pen in her right hand and in her left a document labeled “Treaty of Peace.” The Treaty of Versailles, negotiated that year at the Paris Peace Conference, was signed using a solid gold Waterman pen, and this poster was an attempt to associate a commercial product with the historic event. The Waterman Pen Company was founded in New York in 1884 by Lewis Edson Waterman (1837–1901), inventor of the capillary feed ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Welcome Noble Belgium
This 1917 poster shows Belgium and the United States greeting each other in front of the flags of these two countries, marking the U.S. entry into World War I. Belgium is represented by a woman holding the coat of arms of the kingdom, which features a lion (Leo Belgicus) and the national motto: L’Union fait la force (Unity makes strength). The United States is represented by the figure of “Columbia,” the female personification of America that was widely used in the late 19th and early 20th century and ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
The Nation is Fighting for its Life. All Men Should Enroll for National Service
This 1915 poster shows the figure of Britannia, holding a flag with the words “National Service” emblazoned on it. The caption below reads “Who Follows?” The bottom line states: “Forms for offer of services can be obtained at all post offices, national service offices, and employment exchanges.” Until March 2, 1916, when the Military Service Act introduced conscription, Great Britain’s World War I army was comprised entirely of volunteers, and many of the most famous wartime posters were recruitment appeals. The illustration on this poster was reproduced with permission ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Bahram Gur in the Yellow Pavilion
This text describes an episode from the Haft Paykar (Seven thrones) of Niẓāmī Ganjavī (died 1202−3), the fourth book from his Khamsah (Quintet). In this romantic allegory of love and frustration, Sassanian ruler Bahram Gur (died 438) visits seven pavilions on each day of the week. Here, Niẓāmī describes the ruler's visit to the gunbad-i zar (yellow pavilion) on a Ruz-i yakshamba (Sunday), an anecdote represented on the folio's verso. In this tale, Bahram Gur is disappointed by his concubines and convinces a woman, who first refuses ...
Contributed by Library of Congress
Description of the Eight Pageants Held during the Games on the Occasion of the Christening of Princess Elisabeth of Hesse, 1596
In 1596 Landgrave Moritz of Hesse (1572–1632) celebrated the christening of his daughter, Elisabeth von Hessen-Kassel (1596–1625), with four days of lavish games, tournaments, and fireworks. This manuscript was compiled and executed by an unknown hand. It details the costumes of eight inventions (pageants) accompanying the central Ringelrennen (game of skills as a late variant of the medieval tournament games), which took place on August 27, 1596. Each pageant presents an allegorical or mythological motif, using an abundance of 165 finely detailed fantastic costumes. The eight pageants presented ...
Contributed by Bavarian State Library
Description of the Christening of Lady Elisabeth of Hesse
In 1596 Landgrave Moritz of Hesse (1572–1632) celebrated the christening of his daughter, Elisabeth von Hessen-Kassel (1596–1625), with four days of lavish games, tournaments and fireworks. Two years later, the artist, engraver, and publisher Wilhelm Dillich (1571–1650) created and published a richly decorated description of these festivities in two volumes. The lavish illustrations mostly detail the costumes and decorations of the various pageants, with many of the attendees dressed as historical, allegorical, or mythological characters. The copy preserved in the Bavarian State Library was hand-colored by Dillich ...
Contributed by Bavarian State Library
Ship of Fools
Das Narrenschiff (Ship of fools) by the Basel lawyer Sebastian Brant (1458–1521) was one of the first lavishly illustrated works to be printed in the German language in the 15th century and one of the most popular. Following the first edition, which was printed in 1494 by Brant’s old university friend Johann Bergmann, Brant’s satire on human foolishness became a European bestseller. By 1574, more than 40 editions of the text had appeared, including translations into Latin, French, English, Dutch, and Low German. The text describes a ...
Contributed by Bavarian State Library
Cuba Shall Be Free
This chromolithograph is an allegorical composition. It shows a Cuban soldier holding the national flag on the left, the winged figure of Victory at the right, a coat of arms at lower center with cannonballs and military band instruments, and ships in the background. The title reads Cuba Sera Libre (Cuba shall be free), with the dates October 31 to November 4, 1873 indicated on the banner at the bottom. The title and the dates refer to the Virginius Incident, in which the Virginius, a blockade runner previously employed in ...
Contributed by Brown University Library
Sound Advice
Muḥammad Ḥusain Āzād (also called Ehsan Azad, circa 1834–1910) was a successful Urdu poet and a writer of vivid prose, particularly in his historical writing. He was born in Delhi, where his father, Muhammad Baqir, edited the first Urdu newspaper, Delhi Urdu Akhbar. Muhammad Baqir’s involvement in the Uprising of 1857 (also known as the Sepoy Rebellion) led to his execution by the British. Āzād moved to Lahore several years later, where he taught Arabic at Government College and was subsequently professor of Urdu and Persian at Oriental ...