Beloit College - Nuremberg Chronicle
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Latin and German Editions

The Nuremberg Chronicle was originally published in Latin on June 12, 1493. From the outset, however, a German-language version had been planned. Translated by Georg Alt (c. 1450-1510), the city treasurer of Nuremberg, who assisted Schedel in compiling the Latin edition, the German edition was published on December 23, 1493. In addition to cosmetic differences (e.g., the Latin edition was printed using a typeface known as Antiqua Rotunda, while the German employed Bastarda Schwabacher), the German edition is very slightly abridged, with omissions that include certain abstruse thoughts as well as seeming repetitions. Occasionally, however, the German Chronicle includes minor but telling expansions on the Latin text. For example, in the Latin version one is told that a certain idea "can be found in Ovid" (folio IIr); the German version, however, informs its readers that this same idea "was elegantly expressed by Ovid, a poet." Such differences point to slightly different readerships: the Latin was aimed at the imperial, theological, and academic markets; the German at the upper middle class who did not possess a university education. Scholars estimate that approximately 1400-1500 Latin copies and 700-1000 German ones were printed. A document from 1509 has the final account of the sales of the two editions. It is interesting to note that 535 Latin and 60 German copies remained unsold. Approximately 400 Latin copies and 300 German ones survive today. To view a folio from the German edition, click on the following links: German Folio LIIr, German Folio LIIv.

About thus Book
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What's in a Name?
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Author
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Medieval World Histories
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Patrons and Publishers
- Artists
- Printer
- Latin and German Editions
- A Pirated Copy?
- A Guided Tour of the Nuremberg Chronicle
- Beloit's Copy of the Nuremberg Chronicle
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Annotated Bibliography

 
Book Contents
English Translation
Technical Details
Acknowledgments
 

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