2003

A7 -- Special Listings


Katalog der graphischen Porträts in der Herzog-August-Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel: 1500–1850 [Catalog of the Portrait Drawings in the Herzog-August Library in Wolfenbüttel: 1500–1850]. Ed. Peter Mortzfeld. München [et al.]: Saur. 30 cm. ISBN 3-598-31480-9: EUR 7,348 (38-volume set) [99-B09-171]

Series A, Die Porträtsammlung der Herzog-August-Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel [The Portrait Collection of the Herzog-August Library in Wolfenbüttel]
Vol. 1. Abbildungen ABa [Illustrations A–Ba]. 1986. x, 429 p. ill. ISBN 3-598-31481-7
Vol. 28. Abbildungen WoZ [Illustrations Wo–Z]. 1986. 465 p. ill. ISBN 3-598-31508-2
Vol. 29–30. Biographische und bibliographische Beschreibungen mit Künstlerregister [Biographical and Bibliographical Descriptions, with an Index of the Artists] Part 1. ABra; A 1A 2764. 1996. xvi, 359 p. ISBN 3-598-31509-0
Part 2. BreEm; A 2765A 5598. 1997. viii, 385 p. ISBN 3-598-31510-4

Despite its great importance, volume 1 of this catalog was not reviewed at the time of its appearance in 1986; the publication of volumes 29 and 30, the first volumes of descriptive catalog entries for Series A, gives us the opportunity to review it here. Th e volumes of plates ( vols. 1–28) contain reproductions of 25,122 individual portraits, including all variations (except for true duplicates) held in the Herzog August Bibliothek (HAB). The strength of the collection lies in its copper engravings from the 17th and early 18th centuries. Volume 29 is the first of nine volumes that serve to describe the illustrated materials. The entries provide a gold mine of information, including biographies of the portrait subjects, the HAB call number, and detailed art historical descriptions of portrait and technique, including artist and publisher and also, in some cases, the call number of the book from which the loose-leaf portrait was taken. Th ere will be a cumulative index of subjects and artists, as well as further special indexes of iconography, biblical citations, mottos, emblems, and verses. Series B will serve to catalog the portraits contained in the ca. 400,000 old printed books of the HAB and will certainly exceed the number of loose-leaf portraits. This project will take many years to complete. In the meantime, we should rejoice in the wealth of materials made known to us in these excellent biographical and bibliographical entries. [sh/erh]

Künstler im Spiegel einer Sammlung: graphische Bildnisse von Malern, Bildhauern und Kupferstechern aus dem Porträtarchiv Diepenbroick; 8. Juni bis 7. September 1997 [Artists Reflected in a Collection: Portrait Drawings of Painters, Sculptors, and Engravers from the Diepenbroick Portrait Archive; June 8–September 7, 1997]. Kirsten Ahrens. Münster: Westfälisches Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte, 1997. 261 p. ill. 27 cm. ISBN 3-88789-123-6: EUR 9.70 (Westfälisches Landesmuseum, Domplatz 10, D-48143 Münster, fax [49 251] 5907167) [99-B09-172]

The antiquarian Hans-Dietrich Freiherr von Diepenbroick-Grueter (1902–1980) began to build a second portrait collection after his first one, comprising over 30,000 items, was lost in the Second World War. This second collection was intended not as sales material but as an archive, and upon the collector’s death it was transferred to the Westphalian State Museum. Combined with its own holdings and added entries, the museum’s portrait collection now comprises the largest in Germany, with over 120,000 items. Since 1989, the entries have been cataloged very slowly (as of 1998 only 4,000 items). However, over the past 20 years, the museum has mounted several thematic exhibits of portraits according to the subject’s profession (e.g., doctors, musicians, archeologists, etc.). Unfortunately, all of the accompanying catalogs are out of print. The 1997 exhibit catalog of 180 portraits includes subjects from the Renaissance to the 20th century. Each entry takes up two facing pages with a reproduction of the portrait on the right and a description with bibliographic references on the left. There are two indexes, one for the depicted artists and another for engravers and painters. [sh/erh]

Bühnenstars: Bilder von Schauspielern, Sängern und Tänzern aus vier Jahrhunderten; Schätze aus dem Deutschen Theatermuseum München [Stars of the Stage: Pictures of Actors, Singers, and Dancers from Four Centuries; Treasures of the German Theater Museum, Munich]. Günter Schöne. Wilhelmshaven: Noetzel, 1997. 252 p. 31 cm. (Quellenkataloge zur Musikgeschichte, 22). ISBN 3-7959-0710-1 [99-B09-173]

The German Theater Museum in Munich has more than 40,000 portraits of actors in its archives. In 1977, the first volume of a comprehensive catalog of this collection was published as Porträt-Katalog des Th eatermuseums München (previously the Clara-Ziegler-Stiftung), compiled by Gunter Schöne. A second and concluding volume followed in 1981. Published 16 years later, Bühnenstars reproduces several hundred portraits from this vast collection, supplementing the catalog already published, to which it is linked by references accompanying every illustration.

Compared with other such collections, in which the section of plates or illustrations precedes the explanatory texts, this volume displays notable differences. There are, for example, no clear selection criteria—the reader is left uncertain whether the quality of the actor or portraitist has contributed in any way to the selection. (Statements in the foreword are contradictory.) Additionally, the scope is impossibly broad for such a rigorously selective work: performers from opera, theater, and dance have been chosen from four centuries and numerous European countries and the United States. The grouping of images is not based on any historical or structural criteria. Instead, arrangement rigidly follows the year of birth of the performer. The result is a hodgepodge of media, from engravings to chalk drawings, and of settings, with stage portraits alternating with domestic scenes from the private lives of the actors. An introduction and various indexes do not alleviate this confusion.

The problems can be explained in part by the fact that the author of the excellent collection inventory, Günter Schöne, died in 1986, and this pictorial work, though dedicated to him in memoriam, was not prepared under his direction. An exhibit by the Theater Museum, planned for 1997, did not take place—this volume was apparently intended as the catalog to accompany it. Yet even though it remains a torso, Bühnenstars still offers a host of interesting visual experiences and insights for friends of theater history. It also succeeds in showing how important a large-scale project would be to present this collection of portraits, applying criteria more appropriate to its subject matter. [ust/jg]

Les matricules universitaires [University Student Directories]. Jacques Paquet. Turnhout: Brepols, 1992. 149 p. 24 cm. (Typologie des sources du moyen age occidental, 65). ISBN 2-503-36065-3: FB 1,350 [99-B09-174]

By late 1997, 78 installments had been published in this series on the typology of medieval sources. This fascicle, distributed in 1992, was devoted to the student directories of medieval universities. Matricula are not biographical works in the narrow sense, but they are often consulted in the course of biographical research, usually by genealogists, and are known for the difficulty of their use. While other works treat the issues faced by genealogical researchers (see especially the chapter on “Universitäts- und Hochschulmatrikeln” [University Directories] in the 11th edition of the Taschenbuch fiir Familiengeschichtsforschung, [Pocket Book of Genealogy] (Neustadt an der Aisch, 1995), the present work specifically addresses the needs of historians.

Chapters treat the various types of matricular directories, their genesis and development, as well as text-critical issues (e.g., reliability for statistical research). The author provides a list of published directories to 1510 and, in a final chapter, considers the usefulness of this document type for research in biography, genealogy, student population size and fluctuation, geographic origins, social history, university history, and the like. Research in the field published through the early 1990s is noted and critically reviewed. For all its usefulness for historians, the work will be of less interest to the most frequent users of medieval university directories, namely genealogists and biographers, whose needs will be better met by the literature cited in this review. [sh/jg]


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