WHOLE BIBLE IN
Bible. German. Selections. 1787. Biblia ectypa. Bildnussen auss Heilige Schrifft dess Alt-und
Neuen Testaments...von Christoph Weigel. Augsburg, 1787. Folio. Unpaginated,
unfolioed: title-page, 100 ff.; sectional title-page, 78 ff.; sectional title-page,
was the artist who executed this monumental work, being an entirely engraved
pictorial Bible illustrating hundreds of famous stories
(the creation of Heaven and Earth, the temptation of Eve, Jacob's ladder, and
so on), with other suitable images luxuriously added as well (Mark with his
lion, Paul composing his letter to the Ephesians, etc). Above
each image is its chapter source and a short descriptive Latin caption (e.g.,
"Scala coeletis a dormiente Iacovo visa"); engraved below it is a longer quotation
from the German Bible. In total, Weigel's volume contains three engraved title-pages
and 839 engraved illustrations: 11 are full-page, 12 are one-third-page, 816
are one-quarter-page, all are extremely well done. This
is not what one typically thinks of, as an “illustrated Bible”; that is,
it is not “embellished text” it is, rather, the whole Bible IN pictures.
The book first appeared in the late 17th century, and while it may well
have been reprinted more than once, neither NUC nor RLIN shows any
edition other than one of 1695. Moreover, apparently the 1695 copy that appears
both those bibliographical sources is the same incomplete one. This
magnificent collection of engravings is clearly rare.
Contemporary boards, covered in a stone-pattern paper in
tones of brown and black; one joint repaired. Boards bumped and abraded,
along edges and with loss of paper at corners. Internally a good copy with
relatively light foxing and only occasional stains, virtually all in margins:
Weigel's images are remarkably clean. A
joy and a wonder.
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