Chronicle of all the Emperors and Kings since Christ’s Birth
From 1472 Johann Bämler (circa 1435–1504) ran a printing shop in Augsburg. As he offered his printed books in various stages of completion, his products display a variety of finishes and bindings. A considerable number of books from Bämler’s press were supplied with painted initials, miniatures, and acanthus-leaf and filigree decorations done at his own workshop. Such is the case in this copy of Jakob Twinger’s Chronicle, which was originally owned by Konrad Bollstatter, a professional scribe active in Augsburg from 1466, who used―among other sources―Bämler’s expanded edition of the chronicle printed in 1476 to make additions to his own copy. On folio 2 recto, this copy contains a finely ornamented initial painted in tempera on a gold ground and decorated with acanthus leaves as well as several other initials ornamented with filigree. On other leaves, Twinger’s introduction has been supplemented by hand together with a colored pen drawing portraying the author and a miniature depicting the creation of the world. The latter integrates elements of two woodcuts illustrating the book of Genesis published in Gunther Zainer’s edition of the Bible of circa 1475‒76 and in the Bible of Jodokus Pflanzmann, which was copied in the Bible published by Anton Sorg in 1477, or their model. The same illuminator painted a picture of an enthroned pope covering a passage of text on folio 167 recto, while the deleted text was copied by hand, starting on folio 149 recto and expanded with historical accounts from King Ruprecht (reigned 1400–1410) onward to emperor Frederick III (1452–93), ending in the year 1473. As a result, the illustration of the pope now precedes the printed biographies of the popes, which from folio 184 recto onwards have been supplemented with papal vitae, beginning with Gregory XII (1406–15) and ending in 1477 in the pontificate of Sixtus IV (1471–84). One may therefore conclude that the drawings were added to the book in Augsburg in or around 1477. The coats of arms provided on folio 2 recto remained blank. The incunable came to the Bavarian State Library from the Benedictine monastery of Saint Ulrich and Saint Afra in Augsburg in 1803.
Johann Bämler, Augsburg, Germany
Type of Item
208 folios, parchment : illustrations
- This description of the work was written by Karl-Georg Pfändtner.
- BSB Shelfmark: Cgm 7366
Last updated: August 1, 2017