(Leipzig: Insel-Verlag, 1925-27). 372 x 250 mm. (14 5/8 x 9 3/4"). 428, [1] (colophon) leaf. No. 270 OF 320 COPIES.

Publisher’s fine full cream-colored pigskin over bevelled boards, large raised double cords, spine panel with blind titling, double endbands in tan and olive green. With penwork initials in red and blue, including some large puzzle initials, and 137 FULL-PAGE COLOR MINIATURES. Mild soiling to pigskin, otherwise a very fine copy, pristine internally.

An imposing and beautiful object, this is a very fine early facsimile of the most comprehensive collection of Middle High German poetry and ballads, with 137 miniatures depicting either the poets or scenes from their works. Also known as the "Great Heidelberg Book of Songs," the material in the original manuscript was compiled between 1300 and 1340 by Rüdiger Manesse of Zurich and his son. It contains almost 6,000 verses from 140 poets, arranged in order of rank, beginning with Holy Roman Emperor Henry VI (1165-97) and ending with a bard known only as Der Kanzler ("The Chancellor"). The miniatures show the poets at tournaments in full armor, sitting on their thrones, playing musical instruments, or receiving tokens from fair maidens. The original manuscript is held at the library of the University of Heidelberg; its delicate condition mandates that it be kept in a climate-controlled state and rarely exhibited. In its stead, a copy of the present facsimile is kept on permanent display in the library's foyer. Produced by the graphic arts press founded by German photographer Albert Frisch, this remarkable likeness was one of the highest achievements of the reproduction technique of the first half of the 20th century. There are later facsimiles of this work, but the Insel-Verlag production is far and away the preferred version.

Add to Cart Price: $7,500.00

PJP Catalog: 74.056


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