An Abecedarium: Illuminated Alphabets from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum) 1st Edition

8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0892364718
ISBN-10: 0892364718
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An Abecedarium: Illuminated Alphabets from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum) + The Art of the Pen: Calligraphy from the Court of the Emperor Rudolf II + Nature Illuminated: Flora and Fauna from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum)
Price for all three: $34.31

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Taken from a 16th-century manuscript now housed in the Getty Museum, the intricate illustrations in this tiny volume are characteristic of Renaissance art: each letter is surrounded by religious and political imagery, as well as fanciful creatures and a fragment of a Psalm beginning with the respective letter. The warm, rich colors and the juxtaposition of elements such as crabs, asps, grapes, disembodied wings, crests, irises, and flags imbue each plate with a sense of divine haughtiness and humor. Besides the drawings themselves, the accompanying notes describe the evolution of different fonts, providing information that helps the reader interpret the wealth of information in each drawing.

From Library Journal

Demeude's preoccupation with letters has led him to bring together illuminated initials and ornamental characters from 12 centuries of alphabets and typography, ranging from 8th-century sacred manuscripts to 20th-century mass-produced postcards. Included are samples from over 100 alphabets created by such artists as Durer, Holbein, Daumier, and Kate Greenaway. The animated letters may be draped with the human form, used to offer historical or biblical scenes, or entwined with naturalistic scenes. While the accompanying historical notes and essays are succinct, the visuals will be of the most value as a study collection. The Getty's diminutive (51/4" x 71/4") volumes contain reproductions and notes on calligraphy and miniature paintings from a work commissioned by the court of Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II during the 16th century. Currently in the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Mira calligraphiae monumenta (Model Book of Calligraphy) is the combined effort of master calligrapher Georg Bocskay and court artist Joris Hoefnagel. Considered one of the most precious books of the European Renaissance, it represents the transition from medieval European manuscript illumination to the emergence of the floral still life genre of the early 17th century. Nature Illuminated contains reproductions of 41 manuscript pages with meticulous studies of flora and fauna. An Abecedarium contains 38 illuminated reproductions of Roman capital and Gothic lowercase letters. These unique titles are best suited to specialized art and design collections.?Judith Yankeilun Lind, Roseland Free
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Series: Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum
  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: J. Paul Getty Museum; 1 edition (July 10, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892364718
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892364718
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #894,918 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Pio on March 10, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There are 3 in this set of matching books. The other two are superb in their art choices. This one is also very pleasing. It concentrates on calligraphy letters just as is shown on the front cover. The book contains similar prints but for the other letters of the alphabet in capitals and small case. That is all that is contained in this book. So it is a matter of personal preferences if you want a book with nothing but this. I bought it to complete my set and am very happy with it, but if I had to do without one of the three, it would be this one without a doubt. I like this book a lot, but I truly adore the other 2: NATURE ILLUMINATED (my favorite) and THE ART OF THE PEN.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Kaelsen Thorne on December 4, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I happened upon this true gem of a book at The Getty, while on a trip to Los Angeles, and simply had to have it. Anyone with an appreciation for words and letters and the challenge of combining them as perfectly as possible, will love this! It is a constant delight and one with which I gift special friends.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By L.M.Fields on September 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There is little text to speak of, mostly plates really, which would be fine if it weren't for the fact that it's so small, so skinny... there's just not enough to the book and it would have made better sense to me if it had been combined with its two other sister books as one complete volume so this is more like a hiccup than a book but, for what is there, the pages are beautiful.
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By Nicholas Dieter on June 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is unbelieveably inexpensively priced when the quality of paper, printing technology, and bidning are considered. The pages are a joy to the eyes to look at. I have yet to decipher the meanings behind the symbology, but htat is why I bought it. I could not imagine a more useful presentation from which to work from in order to better acquaint myself with these mysteries of the mideival ages.
One thing to know, the book itself is somewhat small, but not too small, and in fact I think it the right size as it is easier to handle during a casual perusal of what is inside.
I am happy with this purchase- Nick
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An Abecedarium: Illuminated Alphabets from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum)
This item: An Abecedarium: Illuminated Alphabets from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (Getty Trust Publications: J. Paul Getty Museum)
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