Newly uncovered illuminations from the Renaissance depicting fantastic and miraculous phenomena
“TASCHEN does it again… now TASCHEN comes out with a beautifully packed volume of hallucinatory illustrations of 16th century renaissance art. This is true TASCHEN: deep as opposed to extreme, with depictions of celestial phenomena and portentous signs that offer a unique view into the fears and fascinations of the age.”
“The iconography is fascinating, the object is beautiful and the arguments fascinating: a small publishing miracle.”
“This lavish facsimile is a wonder in its own right.”
“Wonders never cease, and one of these is this marvelously apocalyptic book.”
“Tip-top year’s end favourite… An apocalyptic atmosphere that is strangely resonant today.”
“Celestial splendours. This manuscript represents an extraordinary revelation of Renaissance art… Leafing through the pages of this superb (boxed) facsimile, we dive deep into the metaphysical anxieties and dramas of sixteenth-century man.”
“This Book of Miracles is a gorgeous unheralded surprise: a foundling of unknown parents, a virgin birth.”
“The Augsburg Book of Miraculous Signs is a sparkling store of apocalyptic images.”
The Book of Miracles
Newly uncovered illuminations from the Renaissance depicting miraculous phenomenaThe Book of Miracles that first surfaced a few years ago and recently made its way into an American private collection is one of the most spectacular new discoveries in the field of Renaissance art. The nearly complete surviving illustrated manuscript, which was created in the Swabian Imperial Free City of Augsburg around 1550, is composed of 169 pages with large-format illustrations in gouache and watercolor depicting wondrous and often eerie celestial phenomena, constellations, conflagrations, and floods as well as other catastrophes and occurrences. It deals with events ranging from the creation of the world and incidents drawn from the Old Testament, ancient tradition, and medieval chronicles to those that took place in the immediate present of the book’s author and, with the illustrations of the visionary Book of Revelation, even includes the future end of the world.
The surprisingly modern-looking, sometimes hallucinatory illustrations and the cursory descriptions of the Book of Miracles strikingly convey a unique view of the concerns and anxieties of the 16th century, of apocalyptic thinking and eschatological expectation. The present facsimile volume reproduces the Book of Miracles in its entirety for the first time and thus makes one of the most important works of the German Renaissance finally available to art lovers and scholars. The introduction puts the codex in its cultural and historical context, and an extensive description of the manuscript and its miniatures, as well as a complete transcript of the text, accompany the facsimile in an appendix.