Friday, May 01, 2009

Driftnet Fishing

Planetenuhr by Isaac Kiening, 1569 (MDZ)

'Horae Planetarum'

This interesting object is displayed in two images at MDZ and is otherwise known as 'Planetenuhr' or 'Horizontalsonnenuhr'. The latter term translates to -horizontal sundial-. Produced in 1569 by Isaac Kiening, this puzzling (to me) item appears to be a ?stamped parchment or leather sheet mounted in a wooden frame - the second image (an inscription on the ?back) gives more of an indication of the construction material. I'm fairly confused as to how this zodiac clock is meant to be read.

Selenarhia, or, The government of the world in the moon by Cyrano Bergerac, 1659 (Beinecke)
'Selenharia or, The Government of the World in the Moon: A Comical History. Written By that Famous Wit and Cavaleer of France, Monsieur Cyrano Bergerac: And Done into English By Tho. St Serf, Gent.' [1659]

The Early Modern blog at Yale's Beinecke Library posted an entry recently about their current exhibition, 'Starry Messenger: Observing the Heavens in the Age of Galileo'. They include a link to their wonderful collection of related digital images.

De natura rerum liber - Beda..Seneca (1490) MDZ
'De natura rerum liber. Naturales quaestiones libri VII'
from Bede Venerabilis (w) - by Lucius Annaeus Seneca. (1490)

'Epistula ad Philocratem' by Aristeas
(Latin translation of Mattia Palmieri) (1480)

These two illuminated manuscript pages belong to the Hungarian Manuscript Collection hosted for UNESCO by the Bavarian State Library.

Prismes - EA Séguy (pochoir designs) 1931 d
I'm a great fan of the Art Nouveau/Art Deco abstraction designs of EA Séguy [previously]; in this case from the 1931 series of pochoir prints, 'Prismes: 40 Planches de Dessins et Coloris Nouveaux', available from NYPL. (I saved a bunch in this set)

Höllensturz der drei Engel - Dierick Bouts - 1415 (
'Höllensturz der Drei Engel' (~Hell's overthrow of three angels or Three angels' descent into hell) by Dierick Bouts, 1415; a digitised microfilm image from the Image Index of Art and Architecture by way of the Bildarchiv Foto Marburg portal.

Shaman under water (rock art drawing) Witwatersrand-aluka
(Rock art drawing of) "Mormyrid fish, eels and turtles, these represent the "underwater" experience of the Shamans in the altered state of consciousness."

Rock art drawing (witwatersrand - aluka)

Shield - Rock art drawing (witwatersrand - aluka)
Drawings from the Rock Art Research Institute at the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa) and hosted by Aluka: "an international, collaborative initiative building a digital library of scholarly resources from and about Africa."

Annals of Creation (Naxi pictographs)

Annals of Creation (Naxi pictographs) a

Annals of Creation (detail) (Naxi pictographs)
One of the books at the World Digital Library [previously] that caught my attention was this 10th century work called the 'Annals of Creations' (contributed by the Library of Congress)*
"In this bilingual text, the Dongba text is in color and the Chinese text is in black. The Dongba glyphs are ancient characters that were used to record the dialect of the western Naxi nationality centered around the Li River in Yunnan. They were developed in approximately the seventh century. The Annals of Creation reflect the understanding of the Naxi people concerning the natural world and the origins of humankind, and depict the Naxi people's ceaseless migrations over the course of their history and the struggle of their ancestors against nature."

Vue d'un superbe treillage et des jets d'eau dans le jardin du Roy de Dannemarck, 1700s, chez Basset (Paris) (
'Vue d'un superbe treillage et des jets d'eau
dans le jardin du Roy de Dannemarck'

Printed at chez Basset (Paris) sometime in the 1700s. This baroque garden illustration is one of a series by Basset available from the Colecções Digitalizadas at the Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal (which appears to have been redesigned and upgraded - for the better - since my last visit).

Wunderliche und warhafftige by HM Moscherosch, 1677 (HAB)

Frontispiece from: 'Wunderliche und Warhafftige Gesichte Philanders von Sittewald' by HM Moscherosch, 1677 (HAB) The only translatable word I really understood from the catalogue was 'satire'. I don't recall there being any further illustrations.

Codex Falkensteinensis 1166 (detail)

Falkensteiner Codex 1166-1199 (detail) agriculture

Codex Falkensteinensis or the Falkensteiner Codex [click 'Startseite'] was produced between 1166 and 1199 and is a unique secular manuscript from the High Middle Ages belonging to a group of works known as Traditionsbücher. Essentially it seems to be a detailed feudal record of the holdings, output and nepotistic orders covering the lands and members of the noble Falkenstein-Neuburg family of Southern Bavaria. {see: one (trans.), two (trans.), three}
[via Archivalia]

Barber, Beer Maker, Clergy + Hattier (Jost Amman)

Blazon (Jost Amman)

Coat of Arms (Jost Amman)

Three of Books (Jost Amman)
The Three of Books

Three of Ink Pots (Jost Amman)
The Three of Ink Pots

The above five images were produced by the Swiss woodcut artist, Jost Amman. They are from three of his most significant works: on trades ('Das Ständebuch'), on playing cards ('Charta Lusoria') and a collection of suggested Coat of Arms designs (that proved to be quite influential - the designs were more in the way of templates than the blazons above suggest).

I've had these images for the best part of three years and have finally concluded that I'm not going to get a dedicated Jost Amman entry together. Partly it relates to having spent a lot of time extracting the trades images from La base Estampes de la Bibliothèque municipale de Lyon, only to find (a piece of stupidity that manifests more often than I'd care to reveal) that Wikimedia has the complete collection (slightly lesser quality to my mind), and partly because Mr H had already covered some of the ground in his entry, 'The Suit of Books'. I'm afraid I've misplaced many of the links I had stored up but the BSB Opac results are a good place to start looking for (more of) his digitised works (also).

Blue Sky Press in a balcony - letterpress printing

Blue Sky Press:'In a Balcony' (1902)

Seasons of Wood Engraving

Seasons of Wood Engraving © Paul Ritscher.

The above two images are posted with the permission of Paul Ritscher (typesticker on Flickr), a letterpress printer, bookbinder, wood engraver and educator. He has a great collection of prints, miniature books, posters and printing equipment among his sets.

Follow along at home...


The Clever Pup said...

My husband saw a book downtown about great archival photos found on the web. I said it could only be Peacay. And indeed it was.

Funny how we can search for treasure from the comfort of our livingrooms.

Poor librarians.

Kittybriton said...

Paul Ritscher's work is a delightful discovery. My parents introduced me to the wood engravings of the early 20th century.

lotusgreen said...

the world in the moon reminds me of cyrano! what glee i feel, coming here.

peacay said...

*Poor librarians*

Well, if it wasn't for the wonderful librarians we wouldn't be able to access the material. They aren't going anywhere; their roles are simply evolving.

Thomas Ward said...

Excellent stuff. The second item might more accurately be transliterated "Selenarchia."

MOTH said...

I've seen some beautiful scripts in Yunnan Nationality Museum, there're something more than Li River's. However, I can't understand the stories on them.

Anonymous said...

Your posts are, as always, an inspiration and a delight.

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