German, Nuremberg - Prayer Book, 1445

German, Nuremberg

Prayer Book of St. Catherine's Convent, Nuremberg, 1445

Ink on paper, 16 x 11 cm (6 5/16 x 4 5/16 in.)


Object details

Accession number


Object Case

Dante Case



Publication Place


Binding Description

15th century. Original vellum wrapper with repairs.


1 Vol. (131 leaves) ; paper ; ill : 11 cm (quarto)


Possibly a gift from the Carthusians to the Dominican nuns of S. Katharinekloster, Nuremberg, about 1500.
Collection of Mr. Rodd.
Collection of the English auctioneer and antiquary Samuel Sotheby (1771-1841).
Collection of the English collector and writer William Young Ottley (1771-1836).
By descent to William Young Ottley's son William Campbell Ottley or daughter Henrietta Ottley Bayley (d. 1876), about 1836.
Gift from William Campell Ottley or Henrietta Ottley Bayley to the auctioneer and antiquary Samuel Leigh Sotheby (1805-1861).
Collection of the wool manufacturer William Gibbons Medlicott (1816-1833), Longmeadow, Massachusetts.
Purchased by the scholar and critic Charles Eliot Norton (1827–1908) from William Gibbons Medlicott in 1878, lot 2710.
Purchased by Isabella Stewart Gardner from Charles Eliot Norton, Cambridge in 1899.


Inscribed (front flyleaf): [from Dominican convent of St. Catherine's, Nuremberg; hand of Kunigund Niklasin, librarian]
Inscribed: "L xlv" [shelfmark; hand of Kunigund Niklasin, librarian]
Inscribed (f.1r, lower center): "Das puchlein gehort in das clost'zu sat kather. pdis orde in nimw'g"
Inscribed (f. 2r): "In gotes namen Amen. Die vorred."
Inscribed (last page): statement of ownership
Watermark: tower with a portal [Nuremburg, 1445]
Enclosed: photocopy of typed bibliographic description.
Enclosed: notepaper with pencil sketches, inscribed: "Watermarks of paper of Manuscript Prayers, 1445"
Enclosed: correspondence: letter from Charles Eliot Norton to Isabella Stewart Gardner, 14 December 1905
Enclosed (in black case stamped "xyolographie"): extract, inscribed: "Extract from An Inquiry concerning Invention of the late William Young Ottley". 6 1/8 pages ; 8°
Enclosed (in black case stamped "xylographie"): correspondence: letter from Charles Eliot Norton to Isabella Stewart Gardner, 9 May 1899


William Young Ottley. An Enquiry Concerning the Invention of Printing (London, 1863), pp. 190-93.
William Hughes Willshire. Introduction to the Study and Collection of Ancient Prints, Vol. 1. (London, 1877), p. 173.
George E. Woodberry. A History of Wood-engraving (New York, 1883), p. 24.
William Gibbons Medlicott. Catalogue of a Collection of Books Formed by William G. Medlicott of Longmeadow, Mass. (Boston, 1878), p. 280, lot 2710.
W. L. Schreiber. Manuel de l'amateur de la gravure au XVe siecle, Vol. I (Berlin, 1891), pp. 283-84, nos. 971, 977.
Isabella Stewart Gardner. A Choice of Books from the Library of Isabella Stewart Gardner, Fenway Court (Boston, 1906), pp. 70-71. (as xylographie; scribe as Carthusian monk)
Isabella Stewart Gardner. A Choice of Manuscripts and Bookbindings from the Library of Isabella Stewart Gardner, Fenway Court (Boston, 1922), pp. 4-5.
Seymour De Ricci and W. J. Wilson. Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada, Vol. I (New York,1935-40), p. 930, no. 1.
Paul Ruf. Mittelalterliche Bibliothekskataloge Deutschlands un der Schweiz: Bd. 3, Tiel 3 (Munich, 1961), p. 624. (edition after that of Kunigund Niklasin. Catalogue of the library of Dominican convent of St. Catherine's, Nuremberg. Unpublished manuscript. (Nuremberg, 1455-1457))
University of Pennsylvania Libraries. Schoenberg Database of Manuscripts, no. 198010, accessed 17 November 2016.
Peter Schmidt in Jeffrey F. Hamburger et al. Beyond Words: Illuminated Manuscripts in Boston Collections. Exh. cat. (Boston: Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum; Newton: McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College; Cambridge: Houghton Library, Harvard University, 2016), pp. 15, 94-95, 241, no. 70, ill.

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