The First Four Centuries of Printed Bible Illustration

Originally exhibited January 28–May 18, 2013
The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries


This exhibition of fifty Bibles from Bridwell Library’s Special Collections examines the historical context, artistic development, and cultural impact of the use of illustration in printed editions of the scriptures. Beginning with the pictorial woodcut initials of fifteenth-century German Bibles, highlights of the exhibition include vernacular Bible translations of the Reformation period that used striking and sometimes controversial imagery to enhance their impact, outstanding engraved Bible illustrations from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and examples of illustrated editions from nineteenth-century America.


Bridwell Library Special Collections