The Nuremberg Chronicle

I enjoyed looking at the wide range of books presented to us this morning, but one in particular piqued my interest: The Nuremberg Chronicle. This text is essentially a history book from Genesis through the early 1490s. So far in class we have viewed illuminated manuscripts that have served solely religious purposes, but this book combines religion with, at the time, modern history. This offers a glimpse into  life in the 15th century and emphasizes the tight-knit relationship between every-day life and religion. There are even pages devoted to the future, suggesting that Judgement Day is approaching.

Aside from the content of the text, the pictures are extremely impressive and, I find, are the primary allure. The woodcut illustrations depict hand colored, elaborate cityscapes, kings, and battles.

In the 15th century, this book was one of the most extensively illustrated of its time, and one of the most important. This makes me wonder, six centuries later, what is our modern day Nuremberg Chronicle? Is it even a book?

2 Replies to “The Nuremberg Chronicle”

  1. Beatrice,

    I was also really impressed by the Nuremberg woodcut scene. To me, this two-page spread reminded me of the picture books I read when I was younger. Like I did with picture books depicting fairytale-like lands, I could get lost in the Nuremberg scene.

    Thus far in class, I have not felt that much connection to the religious images – simply because I am not one who practices a particular religion – but this secular image really drew me in. It sparked my imagination and it sparked my intellectual interest. I wanted to learn more about Nuremberg and its inhabitants.


  2. This post made me think about learning history through pictures rather than texts. We were able to see with these books that a great deal of history can be shown through images. For example, we are able to understand the significant role religion plays in the daily life of many solely based upon the religion symbols included in the pictures. Very interesting post!

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