Latin Bible. Venice, 1479

Venice: Nicolaus Jenson, 1479. (06135)

This Bible highlights the role of printing in the European movement toward “globalism” during the fifteenth century. Printed in Italy by a Frenchman trained by the first German typographers, it was decorated by a Netherlandish illuminator. Preceding the initial “I” in Genesis is a fine miniature of God creating the animals. In the lower margin are two more scenes, the creation of Adam and the creation of Eve from Adam’s rib. The surrounding vines, flowers, peapods, berries, insects, and miniscule bird reflect the characteristic illusionism of the Bruges-Ghent school of illumination.

Various passages of this Bible have handwritten marginal notations P, S, and T (for Prima, Secunda, and Tercia), indicating the first, second, and third parts of liturgical readings in church. Other passages are marked with the alphabetical series A through H, identifying a sequence of readings “in refectorio.” These markings closely follow the regulations of the Carthusian Order.

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Printing in Italy
Latin Bible. Venice, 1479