Harold Jantz Collection of German Baroque Literature
About this Collection
Preface : German Baroque Literature, Harold Jantz Collection
The origins of this catalogue go back to the time when Samuel Freedman of Research Publications (now Primary Source Microfilm, an imprint of the Gale Group) consulted with me about details and general principles connected with the microfilming of the Curt von Faber du Faur Baroque library at Yale University. When, upon a visit to Baltimore, he became acquainted with my Baroque library and learned that, with comparable size, there were only about five hundred duplicates or near-duplicates between the two collections, he suggested that my collection should also be prepared for microfilming, since the two would so largely supplement each other and provide a better research library.
After deliberating for some weeks and consulting with several people who have knowledge and perspective in these matters, I came to the conclusion that the positive factors outweighed the negative ones. The cataloguing was a task that would have to be undertaken eventually, and I could foresee that there would never be a better time than the present. For one, skilled assistance was available, whereas later it might not be. Furthermore, the cataloguing would have to keep pace with the microfilming, thus the total time involved would necessarily be restricted and the return to other research and writing would not be too long delayed.
What made me hesitate most was that I had some notion (still far from foreknowledge) of what a huge amount of work was involved. The difficulties in recording the Baroque are almost unimaginable to a scholar of later eighteenth or of nineteenth-century literature. Again and again in the past I had found that the direct examination of a Baroque book in an original edition would show that even the best available catalogues, bibliographies, monographs, and editions could be uninformed or misinformed about it, with a variety of errors and lapses ranging from the peripheral to the central. But I had also found that my own first examination and cataloguing of a book would often not stand up under later, more careful scrutiny. This was a salutary experience, for it alerted me to many of the peculiar treacheries of the Baroque, and it was even more salutary when I found that there were constantly new traps for the unwary and that even a high degree of alertness could not guard against all of them. So I set about the cataloguing with all due diffidence, yet determined to do as careful a piece of work as possible. In sum, it is only the inexperienced who can think of themselves as experts in the Baroque.
In the course of the work, as my assistants and I met the challenge of Baroque ambiguities and indeterminacies and subjected our work to a constant checking and rechecking, we were often discouraged by the persistence of human error, though we did find some consolation in two factors, one negative, one positive. The negative cause for consolation came from the fact that even a specialized bibliography dealing with one author or a small group of authors would be far from error-free, as we were able to observe time and time again, even if it was a recent one prepared by a professional bibliographer. If such a specialist, dealing with one author and a few dozen works is thus afflicted, surely there should be a broader liberality toward normally fallible human beings dealing with hundreds of authors and thousands of works over the course of less than three years (instead of ten or twelve), all this in addition to a full academic schedule and other research and writing. The positive cause for consolation came from the fact that we succeeded in correcting not dozens but hundreds of errors of the past, many of them small, some of them large, and a few even of major significance. They were often traditional errors carried over uncritically from work to work through the past century and a half. We hope this may compensate, perhaps more than compensate, for the errors we have indubitably committed, and we hope also that we have in this catalogue reduced the number of them to a respectable minimum and that few of them are of any importance. What we most hope is that those who discover errors will let us know about them, since later revisions and supplements are planned.
Both in New Haven and Baltimore I received the kind of support and understanding that alone made it possible to carry the work on to completion. In New Haven there was first of all Samuel Freedman with his wide perspective and deep human understanding, and then his able right-hand man, Paul Ferster, whose cooperation was essential in so many respects. Entering into the picture somewhat later, but becoming more and more involved during the final stages was Edward A. Reno, Jr. Both Mr. Ferster and Mr. Reno were assiduous and for the most part successful in securing microfilm from European libraries for leaves or parts missing in this collection, as had previously been done for the von Faber collection. In fact, a considerable amount of the missing matter at Yale had been supplied in microfilm from my library. Among their able assistants I name with gratitude Christine Crocamo, Ellen Armstrong, and especially Margaret Cianfarini whose work grew in importance during the final careful cross-checking of the catalogue entries and the preparation of the indices. The title index was the responsibility of Richard E. Schade, the index of names and subjects that of Edward Reno. I am all the more grateful because these indices will open the way to the rich diversity of the collection and will give access to many an identification and interrelation, observation and insight that might otherwise be overlooked. With special gratitude I name Sereno Bernobich who came twice weekly to my home for the catalogued volumes and microfilmed them in the photography department of the Milton Eisenhower Library. Without his intelligence and good judgment, without his consistent tact and care with the precious prints and bindings entrusted to him, the whole operation could not possibly have proceeded so smoothly and consistently.
From the Baltimore side I was no less fortunate. My young colleague, Dr. Richard H. Allen, who is responsible for most of the collations, exhibited a combination of alertness and good judgment that effectively met the challenge of Baroque irregularity and rapidly brought him to a high degree of accuracy. Of my assistants, fortunately the one with special bibliographical talents and interests remained with me through most, nearly all of the complex task that ranged from the preliminary reference work through the final typing of the catalogue cards. G. William Walkers actual field of research is the later eighteenth century, but by now his detailed knowledge of the Baroque would be difficult to match among the people of his generation. Fully as able and as agreeable to work with was my original research assistant, Lamar Elmore, with whom I began the first tests of the feasibleness of the whole project. It was a joy to observe how evenly and harmoniously the two young men collaborated and spelled each other off in all the tasks that had to be done. I was therefore apprehensive when, past the half-way mark, Lamar Elmore had to leave for his fellowship year in Germany. However, he and William Walker recommended an able replacement in Randall Donaldson with whom the long labor continued just as smoothly. Before the last months, when all were gone, William Walker was able to train a successor, Jeverly Cook, who carried on faithfully and effectively to the end.
Among my colleagues from other universities I owe a special debt of gratitude to Dr. Martin Bircher for his abiding interest, continuing helpfulness, and wide-ranging competence in the Baroque. And beyond those named, my family, my colleagues at the university, my other friends, all have been most understanding and cooperative in ways that were just as vital to the success of this endeavor.
And then I think back through the years to the antiquarian booksellers whose deep wells of knowledge often went far beyond what is available in the printed reference works. The many and pleasant conversations with them remain as memorable as those with my esteemed colleagues from Curt von Faber onward. And variously the acquaintance matured into a friendship that expressed itself in numerous kindnesses. One of the grand old men of the profession, for instance, would during the year or two between my visits have secreted in his desk several volumes that he knew would please me and that of course he could have sold ten times over in the interval. One of the special pleasures of book collecting lies in the uncommonly nice people one meets along the way.
August 20, 1973
When we speak of German Baroque literature, we generally mean the writings that were produced in the German-speaking lands and regions after Late Renaissance Mannerism (Johann Fischart to Heinrich Julius von Braunschweig) and before the early classical writers (Hagedorn and Haller to the elder Schlegels and Klopstock). If we use the method of periodization now prevalent in art history (and indeed equally useful in literary history), namely that of age groups arranged according to year of birth, the oldest writers who clearly belong to the Baroque were born in the early 1570s (with a few transitional figures in the 1560s); the youngest writers normally designated as belonging to the Baroque were born in the late 1690s or, at most, a year or two beyond that (Gottsched and Zinzendorf 1700, Bar 1702). Here also in the concluding years there are transitional figures, though Bodmer, 1698, and Breitinger, 1701, are perhaps more characteristically late Baroque than would generally be conceded. That leaves a span of about one hundred and thirty years of Baroque authors.
If instead of this modern method of periodization, now gradually gaining ground, we use the standard old method of period division, we come to surprisingly parallel results. The literary historians of the nineteenth century, and of the twentieth for the most part, saw a new era (that they did not at first call the Baroque) beginning with the founding of a literary society, the Fruchtbringende Gesellschaft, by Ludwig zu Anhalt-Cöthen and his associates. This happened in 1617, and in the same year young Martin Opitz published his Aristarchus, the first evidence of his new poetry and new poetics that were to follow. Furthermore, Curt von Faber du Faur showed how strikingly the poetry written by Weckherlin for the Stuttgart festivities of 1616 and 1617 differed from that of an anonymous author for the festivities of 1609 and how it also heralded a new age.
The literary historians saw this period ending and a new and different era arising when another brilliant youth, Klopstock, delivered his valedictory address at Schulpforta in 1745, this again a prelude to the new poetry (and the new poetics) that followed, especially with the publication of the first three cantos of his Messias in 1748. Here likewise a period of about one hundred and thirty years, and to this period Karl Goedeke devoted volume three of his magisterial Grundriss, 1887, that has vexed scholars ever since by its opinionations, its errors of omission and commission, but still continues to be indispensable in the absence of something more judicious, comprehensive, and accurate.
The more carefully we examine other, later attempts at setting the limits of the Baroque, and weigh their disadvantages over against their advantages, the more inclined we are to accept this older, more conventional one. To be sure, it is a far from perfect period division, but every other division hitherto proposed is even more imperfect and unsatisfactory. Certainly the arbitrary dates 1600-1700 are as meaningless as they are mechanical, for nothing of literary or artistic importance began or ended on those dates. Going back farther into the sixteenth century brings about a confusion of the Baroque with the only superficially similar Mannerism of the Late Renaissance, this an unfortunate retrogression from careful and correct distinctions long since established.
Since there is probably nothing better than, or even as good as, the old classic period division, perhaps the best we can do is to return to it and see whether we can improve on it and refine it. The modern articulation by age groups, as we have seen, coordinates with it to a remarkable degree. What it adds, however, is a better and clearer insight into the matter of overlapping at the transition from one period to the next.
Naturally, men of the older generation continued literarily active in their old manner some decades into the new era; a very few, like Arndt and Herberger, adapted, at least in part, to the new manner. And the young men, of course, did not wait for 1617 to arrive. Though they may have begun by imitating their elders, a few of them on their own felt their way toward the new manner, in exceptional cases before 1617.
All in all, then, this remains as good a conventional date as any. Actually, it is confirmed by a further phenomenon that should be taken into account: just before that, specifically from 1612 to 1616, appeared the last edition of the collected works of Hans Sachs. It is significant that up to 1616 it was still entirely possible to publish an expensive five-volume edition of the works of Hans Sachs, but after the events of 1616/17 and their sequel it was not possible to take seriously the publication of even a small selection of his works for a century and a half thereafter.
At the other end of the period the situation is less clear only because of the false assumption that the Baroque was followed by the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment is a conceptual division but not a period division, and I need merely call attention to the fact that Leibniz was well along in the forty-ninth year of his life when Johann Christian Günther was born, in order to make my point. Indeed, much of the Baroque is quite unthinkable without the element of the Enlightenment as an integral part of it. All of the poetics from Opitz and Harsdörffer onward are designed for the Enlightenment. The educational reformers from Ratichius onward were men of the Enlightenment in the midst of the Baroque. Leibniz close generational contemporaries from Weise to Thomasius and Wernicke were certainly active in the Enlightenment from the 1670s and 80s onward. And Friedrich von Logaus epigrams, published in part in the 1630s and completely in 1654, remained a permanently cherished work of the Enlightenment through the whole of the eighteenth century and beyond.
In sum, the term Enlightenment turns out to be a non-period designation for certain phenomena that could and did occur both in the Baroque and in the following period. Thus, leaving it aside, what are the Baroque phenomena that continue to occur up to the advent of Klopstock and, in muted form, as an overlap beyond the date? What do we observe in something as characteristically Baroque as the so-called Hofmannswaldau anthology, begun by Benjamin Neukirch in 1695? Fascinatingly enough, we find that the last complete set of all seven volumes was issued between 1734 and 1743 (in order to keep the whole set in print for a few years longer, two of the out-of-print volumes were reprinted as late as 1751 and 1754). An amusing supplementary symptom is the appearance in 1744 of a condensed version of Bucholtz monumental novel about Herkules and Valiska, with an ironic preface explaining the abridgments and illuminating the change of period. So here again we find, as we did one hundred and thirty years earlier, a last appearance of a characteristic old phenomenon coming just before the first appearance of a characteristic new phenomenon. Indeed, it would be difficult to produce another set of dates for the beginning and end of the Baroque that would be as natural and convincing as the years around 1615 and 1745.
The matter of periodization was the first problem encountered in the attempt to coordinate the present collection with the von Faber collection at Yale, as was necessary for the purpose of publication in microfilm. Von Faber set the boundaries of the Baroque much wider at both ends and in addition included earlier and later works that he himself did not think of as strictly Baroque but that he felt were related to Baroque developments. Thus he included authors born as early as 1515 and as late as 1735. He also included some editions published after 1800 and a few photocopies, whereas I strictly excluded both.
In the present catalogue, therefore, the main body of 3169 clearly Baroque works is preceded by a selection of 317 works (from a larger Renaissance library) that can function as a prelude to the Baroque. They fall largely into three categories: (1) the works that were written by the somewhat older writers at the eve of the period and in its beginnings, as for instance by Johann Arndt, Daniel Sudermann. Aegidius Albertinus, Valerius Herberger, Friedrich Taubmann, with only a very few, such as Arndts, remaining standard classics throughout the period; (2) the "hardy perennials," the works of the previous century or more that continued to be read through the period, Hans Sachs, by contrast, being included to illustrate the break in literary tradition that occurred after 1616, as described above; (3) Baroque revivals, older works that the period found germane and issued for its own purposes, as for instance several of the great German Mediaeval mystics and a number of the old chronicles, as frequently shedding light on the Baroque image of the German past. When such an earlier work is only an adjunct to what is largely or mainly a Baroque work, it will of course find its place in the main alphabet.
After the central body of Baroque works comes a selection of 144 post-Baroque works. This small selection from a much larger post-Baroque library was made with a view to illustrating both transitions and survivals. Characteristic for the transition are the early poetic volumes of Hagedorn and Haller (both born 1708). The many later works of these authors are of course not included. Characteristic for the survival are the poetic works of several young disciples of Gottsched, some in distant regions, whose publications were accompanied by prefatory commendations of the master. Various ceremonial and commemorative works also carry on old traditions, as do a number of dramas, novels, poetic collections, various occult, radical, and pietist works. And then there are the first of the post-Baroque critical, historical, and biographical essays that attempt to come to terms, intellectually and aesthetically, with the period just past. Several of them contain treasures of information and insight concerning Baroque authors that have, in part at least, escaped attention. But alongside faithful discipleship and nostalgic retrospect, there are also examples of clashes between the older generation and the young one just rising to dominance. Furthermore, there is one work that will most strikingly show that the beginning or end of a period in the literary arts will not necessarily correspond to the beginning or end of a period in the pictorial arts. In mid-eighteenth century the difference is especially striking, with Baroque art remaining much longer in favor. The contrast is between a set of engravings by Christoph Weigel and the text that Abraham a Sancta Clara wrote for them. So continuingly beautiful did the engravings appear that the heir of Weigel, Johann David Tyroff, reissued the plates as late as 1766, not with the Pater Abraham text of 1707, but with a modern one by Georg Andreas Will.
The other features of arrangement within the pre-Baroque, the Baroque, and the post-Baroque are again a result of decisions reached after a careful weighing of advantages and disadvantages. Von Fabers original and spirited attempt at classification, partly chronological, partly regional, partly systematic, had much to commend it, though in the end it was confusing and it did break down at several vital points. For the present catalogue an alternate possibility of arrangement, according to age groups, was likewise felt to complicate and confuse matters for those not acquainted with this method of organization. Therefore, a simple alphabetical arrangement was employed within each group, yet with the following provisions, again for purely pragmatic reasons. Years of experience convinced me that it was impractical to include the pseudonymous and anonymous works in one alphabet with the works of known authors. For librarians it may be a convenience, for scholars it is a definite hindrance to just those advances that need to be made in so inadequately explored a field. By having the works with authors initials only, the pseudonymous, and the anonymous works separated from the much larger mass of the others, and thus standing with their own kind, I was able over the years to discover the true authorship of a large number of them, some for the first time, others correctly over against previous false attributions, wherewith they entered the main author alphabet and reduced the number of unidentified works. No doubt, many further probable to certain attributions will be possible in the future if the way is thus left clear to further comparative examination. A few additional identifications, ascertained after the cataloguing was completed, have been recorded on the cards and are listed in the general index.
In the matter of cataloguing and collating also, practical considerations dictated that a variant of the general Anglo-American system be adopted as being the simplest, briefest, and clearest along with a reasonable measure of accuracy. The absolutely ideal cataloguing of each of the 3630 numbers would have taken about fifteen to twenty years of time and an equally impossible amount of space, and in the end have been incomprehensible to all but a professional bibliographer. The various abridgments of the Continental methods, as found in the von Faber catalogue, the antiquarian sales and auction catalogues, and various bibliographies, have great disadvantages in the way of ambiguity, inaccuracy, and cumbersomeness that the Anglo-American method successfully avoids. For present purposes the best variant I could find was decidedly not that of the Library of Congress, quite inadequate for the period, but was that employed by a few of the more careful historians and bibliographers of science, with some modifications from the bibliographers of literature. Furthermore, the Baroque does have its peculiar problems, and procedures will have to be accommodated to them.
It must be reiterated that the cataloguing took place in the present-day world of reality with all its limitations of time and facility, not in some ideal never-never land of bibliographical perfection. Every such task always takes longer than one thinks it will; I had set aside two years of my spare time as a maximum; it actually took a half year longer, plus several further brief periods, greatly to the postponement of other research and writing. I envied von Faber who was able to devote leisurely decades to his catalogue, all the more since I realized how often I had to terminate an investigation of a problem when just a few more hours might have brought a more perfect solution. Many of the decisions along the way had to fall short of the desirable and settle for the possible, had to slight the dispensable in favor of the indispensable. One such decision on dispensables was to omit, in all but a few special cases, the cumbersome and error-prone practice of citing the normal reference works in the field such as the Goedeke and the Hayn-Gotendorf. Most every Baroque scholar has three bibliographies at hand and can easily find the references himself. Citing them would only introduce largely superfluous information. With the time and space saved in this way I was able to add far more useful information from far less accessible sources, and thus make a new contribution instead of repeating what everybody already knew.
The experience of the actual cataloguing often provided new insights, led to new decisions on procedure, and thus also to revisions on the cards already made. The final task was a detailed review of about the first thousand numbers and then a general revision of the whole on the basis of accumulated experience and a knowledge of just where the prevalent errors and oversights were most likely to occur. Turning now to the specific details, we shall observe that much, indeed most of what follows here corresponds to normal bibliographic and cataloguing practice, and that only certain features, principally of collation, require more extensive comment, particularly for those accustomed only to Continental methods and procedures.
The catalogue card begins, normally, with the name of the author. In the Baroque this is not the simple matter it became later, for it was not only Shakespeare who spelled his name several different ways; this was a common freedom that many exercised, some even adding Latin versions of their names, while printers contributed further variants. The best a modern scholar can do is to inquire, if possible, what form of the name the author himself preferred or else under what form of the name he was usually and most widely known in his time. Inconsistencies will occur; the Baroque did not worry about them, nor need we. The worst a modern scholar can do is to submit to the fatuous nineteenth-century practice of turning an internationally renowned Latin name into an artificial vernacular reconstruction that would have been unrecognizable to any contemporary and perhaps even to the author himself. Thus the decidedly cosmopolitan Junius, Grotius, Comenius, Cluverius, and the rest are in due courtesy allowed to retain the names under which they were known and under which they knew themselves.
On the catalogue card the authors name is enclosed in brackets if it does not occur on the title page. If the initials of an identified author are present, these remain outside the brackets. Added to the authors name are the dates of birth and death if known; if not known, then the dates of his known career after an fl. (flourished). As in the von Faber catalogue and for the same reasons (Preface ix), translations are treated as follows: precedence is given to the name of the translator, when known, though this is immediately followed by the name of the original author, when known. If the translator is unknown or known only by pseudonym but the original author is known, the work is listed under the authors name. In addition to the reasons given by von Faber that such a work can range through all the shadings from a true translation to a virtually original piece, there is also the factor that for present purposes the most important or interesting feature is often the critical introduction or other prefatory or appended matter. It was possible to make a large number of new author identifications as well as corrections and additions in the dates, but this was done "silently," since it would have been too cumbersome, too time-and-space-consuming to have called attention to them in more than a few essential cases where a long-accepted statement would make the new contribution seem to be in error. That some actually will be in error, is an inevitable result of human fallibility and the thousands of details involved.
Then comes the title in abridged, sometimes greatly abridged form, though always with care to preserve the key words and the essentials of syntax, with each abridgment indicated by the normal series of three dots. Never abridged or omitted are the first words of a title, however unimportant they may seem. Thus when the three dots occur at the beginning of a title, it means only that the authors name and (sometimes lengthy) descriptive attributes come first and it is these that are omitted. In a few cases the titles are of modern brevity and could be given completely; at the other extreme there are some titles that run over two quarto or folio pages, an occasional one that actually runs over four pages before the imprint occurs. Even the most devoted bibliographer would quail at the prospect of reproducing the long title in full glory, and practical considerations call for drastic abridgment, all the more justifiable since the complete title is available on microfilm.
Then follows the imprint, but in clear, standardized form, freed from the obscurities that would baffle not only the foreign user but even the native German. Only a few probably would know that Onoltzbach, Anspach, and Ansbach are one and the same town, more perhaps would know that Ratisbon is Regensburg, but then there are dozens of further place names that are all too obscure or even misleading. Beyond that, the baffling variety of ways in which publisher and printer can reveal or conceal their identities makes it expedient to normalize by listing town, publisher, and printer, in that order, when known. When the title page has a fictitious or fantastic imprint, the real one, if ascertainable or inferrable, is indicated in brackets, with a question mark if some uncertainty is involved. Here the Emil Weller, Die falschen und fingirten Druckorte, was helpful, though it can not be used uncritically since in a number of cases it could be proved to be wrong. In the end, the laborious work of a careful first-hand comparative examination of the internal and external evidence cannot be evaded. Likewise when the date was left in uncertainty, every effort was made to ascertain the correct or approximate date. For the earlier works the Draudius German and Latin catalogues were indispensable; for the later, the Georgi catalogues despite all their errors of omission and commission, often furnished the key information on place and date. What we sorely need, of course, is a facsimile edition of all the Frankfurt and Leipzig semi-annual book catalogues, since there is apparently only one library that was a complete set of them. These too, of course, have to be used with caution, especially with a care to distinguish between books merely announced and those actually published. Beyond these there are an untold number of further reference and other works that contain scattered or isolated information on the where and when of Baroque literary works. Furthermore, the typography and general appearance of a work will enable the experienced eye to date it within a decade or so of its time of origin. Thus the von Faber entry, number 92, Schlarraffenland, cannot possibly be about 1650, but must be about 1720. Manuscript entries will also sometimes furnish valuable clues, as will allusions within the printed text. Here again, in various ways, from various sources I was able to add much new or more correct information. The experienced person will always be mindful of the fact that misinformation on small points has in the past again and again led to misapprehensions in major matters, even in the case of such authors as Gryphius and Grimmelshausen.
Then follows the collation, and this must be described in some detail since for greater accuracy and clarity, along with brevity, it departs in certain features from normal practice. Essential for the description of a Baroque book is the indication of format, not externally and superficially merely according to size, as is the practice of many modern cataloguers, but intrinsically according to the signatures, the actual number of leaves per gathering. In that period of unstandardized paper sizes and untold regional and local variations in all phases of book making, this information often turns out to be vital for correct collation and even for correct identification. More of this later and on the errors that result from failing to observe whether the book is a folio, a quarto, an octavo, a duodecimo, or an even smaller format.
As for the collation proper, in order to avoid the confusion and cumbersomeness of switching back and forth between page count and leaf count, the whole collation is given in pages where the main body of the book is paginated and in leaves in the relatively few cases where the main body of the book is foliated. Where there is no numbering at all, the record is given in pages. There remain only a few books with a mixture of the two, or with a numbering by columns instead of pages, that require special treatment. The presence and location not only of blank leaves but also of blank pages must usually be indicated if one is to distinguish clearly between earlier and later issues or editions. There are several instances where an early issue contains a final blank leaf which in a later issue is converted into an errata page (plus blank verso) or into an addendum. The need for both clarity and brevity in indicating such and similar variants is obvious. Distinguishing between integral blank leaves belonging to the book and fly leaves or note leaves added by the binder is usually easy because of the difference in paper, though in the few (actual) cases where the same paper was used by printer and binder, some caution is called for, especially in instances where prefatory leaves are printed in the last gathering, are removed from there, and are bound near the front of the volume, as happened with some frequency.
Since in the majority of cases the title page has a blank verso, a simple "t.p." means such a one; in the minority of cases the description will read "t.p. & pr. Verso" or "t.p. & engr. Verso." Since frontispieces are almost always engraved, a simple "front," serves for all but a few, as when a woodcut is used: "wdct. front." From this point onward a few typical examples will probably best illustrate procedures:
8. [front., engr. t.p. & pr. verso, 5, 1 bl., 23, 1 bl.], 31, , 623, [46, 3 bl.]p. (40
engr. & 2 wdct. in text), 4 engr. pl. (2 fold.)
This means a volume with 8 leaves per gathering; it begins with an engraved frontispiece having a blank recto, an engraved title page with a printed verso, followed by 5 pages of unnumbered prefatory material, a blank page, 23 more and a blank page, then a short section of 31 numbered pages and one printed unnumbered page, then pages 1-623 of the main text, followed (from the verso of the last numbered page) by 46 unnumbered printed pages (index, errata, etc.), and concluding with 3 blank pages (i.e., a blank verso and a final blank leaf). In the text itself, as an integral part of it, are 40 engravings and 2 woodcuts, and tipped in on separate leaves not included in the main collation are 4 further engraved plates (in addition to the engraved frontispiece), of which 2 are oversize and folded.
4. 124 [incl. t.p. r&b, bl. verso, 5 pref. & 1 bl.], [4 bl.]p.
This means an imprint with 4 leaves per gathering in which the page-count includes everything from the title page (printed in red and black) and its blank verso onward, even though the actual printed numbering at the top of the page begins later. If it begins with the preface, this will be numbered 3, if it begins with the main text, the first number to appear will be 9. The 2 blank leaves at the end indicate that this is probably the original edition in which the text ran through the first two leaves of the last gathering. In a reprint edition economies in typography will be calculated to make the text come out "even" with 120 pages; possibly also the title page will be plain black instead of red and black. A reprint edition usually betrays its nature by having its text end on the last leaf of a gathering, often with more crowded typography (or even smaller type) on the last page or pages, though it can of course happen that the last pages of an original edition are reset more closely to take care of a brief run-over. In the library there are several examples of the same text in the original and in a reprint edition, as for instances the Friedrich Grick Desperat, the one spread over 18 pages, the other crowded (a bit too severely) into 15 pages.
12. [front., engr. t.p., pr. t.p.], xlvi, 492 [recte 480]; [front., t.p., 2], 500,
[112 & 8 bl.]p. & 1 engr. pl. in pt. 2.
This means a book with 12 leaves per gathering and in 2 parts, part one with an engraved frontispiece, an engraved title page as well as a printed one (both with blank versos), 46 introductory pages numbered in lower-case Roman numerals, followed by the main text erroneously numbered from 1-492 (instead of rightly 1-480), with no text missing (as the signatures prove) but with a skip in numbering of 12 pages. Part two has a frontispiece, printed title page only, 2 prefatory pages, 500 correctly numbered pages, followed by 112 appended unnumbered pages and 8 blank pages (4 leaves) that complete the last gathering. Inserted in part 2 is also an engraved plate.
The advantages of this system over that used on the von Faber catalogue or elsewhere will be obvious after a comparative examination: (1) all essential features can be included in the collation as they occur in the volume, rather than leaving some trailing at the end or mentioned out of order with the inevitable ambiguities; (2) one can see at once what is and what is not included in the pagination by way of illustrations, etc.; (3) one is not overwhelmed by overelaborate detail, which can be just as unclear and confusing as the vague ambiguities of much catalogue collation. Just how misleading the standard German collations can be we shall see a bit later in the instance of one of the great classics of the period, the Logau epigrams of 1654.
After the collation comes the descriptive material. Some entries require little or none, most require at least a few lines, some much more. This may include further bibliographical and biographical information (e.g., on other works and authors included, on unexpected features of content, on sources, on confusions with other works of similar title or with authors of similar name, plusses or minuses over against other copies, issues, or editions, rectification of recent or traditional errors), identification, where possible, of the artists responsible for the illustrations, perhaps some critical comment on the place and rank of a work (this especially in the case of a little known or misjudged one), in a few cases mention of significant manuscript additions, book plates, bindings, and whatever else might contribute to the placement and judgment of the work.
One of the grave shortcomings of the von Faber catalogue was not his fault at all but resulted from the pressure put on him to eliminate the traditional designations of size: folio, quarto, octavo, duodecimo, etc. in favor of the more "modern" and supposedly more practical by size of page in centimeters, and this, alas, by height only. Perhaps for the later eighteenth century, and probably for the nineteenth, with their different, more standardized procedures in paper making and print-shop practice, this may actually be a tolerable innovation, though hardly an improvement, but for the Baroque period it is impractical and wrong-headed to the point of serious impairment of our understanding and knowledge. Take, for instance, a clandestine radical German tract that first appeared with fictitious imprint at Amsterdam in duodecimo and then likewise in a faithful, line-for-line reprint (virtually a type facsimile) in very liberal Berleburg in octavo. The different size and shape of certain Dutch paper would make the Amsterdam duodecimo come out about the same size as the German octavo, so that, if no comparative copy or facsimile is at hand, the only way to differentiate between the original edition and the reprint is by the signatures and the leaves per gathering.
Then, of course, there are the often great differences in size between a volume left unbound or in boards in its original uncut condition, another copy bound at the time, and another that, alas, suffered a rebinding and further cutting in the nineteenth century. Where the binders knife was particularly murderous, the nearly square proportions of a quarto could be (and sometimes were) reduced to the narrower proportions of a large octavo. Then there are the further complications that a small folio will sometimes differ little in size and shape from a large octavo, as in the case of the Georg Firmus emblem book, a duodecimo may have signatures in alternate eights and fours, and with the still smaller formats further complications will occur. And that brings up another Baroque phenomenon: certain kinds of works were habitually printed in certain formats, with the fashions, of course, changing over the decades (here again with regional variations and interesting exceptions), so that the size and proportion of a book often tell something about its time, place, and content.
However, the decisive consideration in this whole matter is the fact that awareness of the format provides the easiest and surest means for detecting errors and discrepancies in the pagination and make-up of a book. By having at hand a comparative chart coordinating format, signatures, and pagination, it will usually be possible to tell at a glance whether the pagination is correct and the volume normal or whether it must be more closely examined for irregularities. Failure to take this simple precaution has led to countless errors and oversights, not only in the von Faber catalogue but in many another catalogue and bibliography. Above all, deciding in the case of a skip in pagination whether leaves are actually missing or there is merely a mistake in counting becomes an awkward and uncertain process instead of a clear and easy one, for a mere reliance on catchwords and continuity alone can and sometimes does lead one astray. Thus past collations are so frequently incorrect and unreliable that one is usually at a loss to know whether a discrepant earlier bibliographic record indicates a really different printing or is the result of inaccuracy.
One concrete example is important and indicative enough for present purposes. The von Faber collection and mine each contain what is believed to be a complete copy of the first edition of Friedrich von Logaus ... Deutscher Sinn-Getichte Drey Tausend, Breslau . Yet the collations given are so totally discrepant that at first glance it would seem we are confronted by two entirely different editions. The von Faber collation reads: "2 leaves, 238; 248; 262 pages. With engraved title page." The Wolfenbüttel collation records 3 preliminary leaves for its copy. This could mean that the von Faber copy either lacks the first half-title (for the "Erstes Tausend"), with the printed verso of quotations from Scaliger, or that the cataloguer did not include the printed title page in the collation, though the latter is clearly present, to judge from the catalogued title and imprint. Anyone who examines the Wolfenbüttel copy (as I did), will see how inadequate and misleading also the count of 3 preliminary leaves is and how much simpler and more accurate it would be to describe the preliminary matter in pages rather than leaves. Actually, there are three and one half leaves, since page 1 begins on the verso of the fourth printed leaf, that is, on a left-hand instead of a right-hand page. So instead of foliated clumsiness and ambiguity why not simply begin the collation thus: "8. [engr. t.p., t.p. & pr. verso, 5],..."? But this is not all that is wrong with the conventional collations. Von Faber, Wolfenbüttel, and others record either 237 or 238 pages for part one of the work (237 plus an unnumbered errata page). Since the signatures go through Q8, a glance at ones comparative chart will show that there should be a total of 256 pages minus the 7 preliminary and 1 concluding errata, that is, 248 pages. What happened to the missing 11 pages, of which the Yale and the Wolfenbüttel collations remain unaware? A charming Baroque whimsicality intervened: the printer simply could not make up his mind whether or not to count the blank pages and half-titles between each "hundred" of the first "thousand" epigrams. Sometimes he did, sometimes he did not; sometimes the even numbers come on the right-hand page, sometimes (normally) on the left, so that in the end part one emerged with 11 more pages than numbers. Part two drops four pages, throws in an extra "Zu-Gabe," and concludes with an added 4 blank pages at the end about which previous collations are silent. And part three, finally, skips only one blank page and one half-title, but includes all other pages in its count, up to but not including the final page.
Mention should be made of one little printers trick that will explain how the first prefatory gathering can seem to have an odd number of leaves, even though after the title page the next leaf is normally marked at the bottom as the second, and it is the final leaf that seems to be missing. What happened was that the last leaf of the first gathering was left blank, then had the engraved frontispiece imprinted on its verso, whereupon the last leaf was cut at the top and folded around to the front, so that the frontispiece now faced the title page. In this case (relatively frequent) the last leaf became the first and the frontispiece is an integral part of the first gathering and was not tipped in.
The carelessness of a Baroque printer in the imprinting of a frontispiece has led to a bibliographical puzzle and the creation of a ghost book. There has always been a mystery about three volumes of comedy issued anonymously between 1672 and 1675, fictitiously at Rapperswyl, actually, it has been surmised, at Frankfurt or Hamburg. The present collection contains the third of the works, the Alamodisch Technologisches Interim, the von Faber collection the first, the Kunst über alle Künste, an adaptation (in part close translation) of Shakespeares Taming of the Shrew. The Vienna copy of this translation has an engraved title page (before the printed title page) that corresponds pictorially to the "Erklärung des Kupffer-Tittels" at the end of the volume, but the Kassel copy has an entirely different engraved title page, not tipped in but conjugate with the last (12th) leaf of the first gathering. This title page, inscribed Die Wieder komende Angelica has no pictorial relation to the concluding explanatory verses. Scholars have been baffled by it and have come to various wrong conclusions, largely, it would seem, because they did not know that the Angelica title properly belongs to an anonymous brief novel, present in this collection but apparently not available elsewhere. The simple and probable explanation is that the Angelica novel and the Kunst über alle Künste were printed about the same time at the same print shop, and that would mean at Frankfurt, since the novel is known to have appeared there. Some careless workman confused the two copper plates, and equally careless later bibliographers conflated the two titles and let loose a ghost that continues to haunt the book world: Die wiederkommende Angelica, oder Kunst böse Weiber gut zu machen. The little duodecimo novel itself shows a variant on the coordination of pages and signatures, in that the engraved title on the first leaf (conjugate with the twelfth) is not included in the signature count; instead the numbering later skips from Aiv to Avi. The author of the comedies was probably a native of the Hessen-Nassau region near Frankfurt. The little novel, however, in style and attitude, is not even remotely related to them.
Though most of the vagaries of Baroque book making were a result of the unstandardized, experimental, and individualistic society of the day (Baroque absolutism, so-called, was narrowly limited and existed more in theory than in actuality), there are instances of intended dishonesty. A fairly full report about them can be found in the sections on printers and binders in Hönns Betrugs-Lexicon, of which there are two variant editions in this collection. My chief collaborator and I did discover several volumes cleverly designed to seem to contain more gatherings and more pages than they actually do; and since payment at the time was by gathering, there were extra profits all along the way. However, most errors in pagination, etc. were perfectly honest ones and simply resulted from the fact that most people of earlier centuries were weak in their arithmetic and counting (even Voltaires arithmetic in his Micromégas falls far below the rest of his fiction). English books I have collated can be just as fantastically irregular. Short of a laborious page-by-page collation (impossibly time-consuming in such a large collection and actually necessary only in exceptional instances), the best way to catch the errors and irregularities is to prepare comparative charts for each format and its pagination; in this way, by checking beginning and end of each pagination against its signature (and making specimen checks at select intervals, especially between the separate parts if any), it is possible to spot most irregularities, not only in pagination but also in those rarer though not infrequent instances where the alphabet of signatures consists not of the normal 23 gatherings but of one or two more or less.
One particular trap for the unwary of frequent occurrence comes in the thicker volume that contains unpaginated prefatory material, then a normally paginated short introductory section of, say, 32 or 48 pages, after which the pagination starts again with page one and goes on into the hundreds or over. Failure to notice this is one of the repeated errors in the von Faber catalogue, and on rechecking our own collations I noticed with dismay that several times it had happened to us also, though I hope the rechecking eliminated most such errors. Thus a von Faber collation indicating a copy less complete than one in this catalogue may be the result not of an imperfect copy but of an imperfect collation. I say "may be," because it happened in some instances at the time of publication that some copies were issued with and some without the extra-paginated introductory material (or, similarly, supplementary material) and the work can occur in either state or issue in untouched contemporary binding. Another possibility that can occur is that a leaf with printed directions to the binder will on binding be removed from nearly all copies and be preserved in only a few or even one, as happened in one of my two copies of Hallmanns dramas, where the table of content and order was intended for the binder only. In the collection there is another case where cancel leaves and directions to the binder were added at the end, but the binder fortunately was too lazy or stupid to make the required change and left them appended; thus the volume exists here in both its first and its second state.
Turning now to the nature and content of my collection, I can perhaps best begin with a word from my revered old friend, Curt von Faber du Faur, during one of the first of the conversations we had through the years about books and people and adventures in collecting. It may have been on the occasion when I had acquired a complete set of the poetic works of Brockes and told him of my delight at finding some incomparably beautiful poems even in the late volumes that the critics traditionally hold in scorn (without, of course, ever having examined them). That struck a responsive note, and he told me that Brockes had provided the initial impulse toward his Baroque collection. As a young man he had come upon some of his poems in an anthology and had attempted to buy a modern edition of them, only to be told by the bookseller that there was no modern edition and that he would have to buy an early one. This he proceeded to do and thus opened up for himself a previously closed area of fascinating and forgotten German literature. He especially dwelt on volume seven, ...Land-Leben in Ritzebüttel, 1743, and vividly recreated for me the wondrous poetic evocation of country life and child life that have only rarely had their equal in the literature of Germany or of any land.
At that time my Baroque library was still relatively small in comparison with the great collection that von Faber had assembled over the course of decades. But it already contained a number of rarities that he, with all his unusual opportunities, had never been able to acquire. As we discussed this paradox, he was able to observe, with his longer and broader experience of other collections, that "Every Baroque collection is different." There are only relatively few literary works of the period that every collection of some size can be expected to contain. The rest are so rare and turn up so sporadically that even smaller collections at times contain works that the great collectors have never had an opportunity to acquire.
The full truth of this came home to me when the catalogue of his collection was first printed and he sent me an unbound advance copy. By that time my collection was of about the same size as his, and yet between the two I found only some five hundred duplicates or near-duplicates. There would not have been even that many if we had not exchanged books extensively. When his library was combined with the previous Baroque holdings at Yale, there was a fairly large number of duplicates, many of which were added to my collection, among them various of the famous standard works of early and mid Baroque that by my time had virtually disappeared from the open market. In exchange he received some of the great rarities that I had through good fortune acquired. To give only one example: he had the very rare Nürnberg novel Macarie by Heinrich Arnold Stockfleth. I had the even rarer sequel to it by Stockfleths wife, Maria Catharina. Now both are together, as they apparently are nowhere else in the world.
When the supplement to his catalogue appeared, posthumously, I found a larger proportion of duplicates, though still relatively few. On the other hand, the number of real duplicates decreased remarkably when in mid 1970 I started the wearisome but necessary process of detailed comparing and collating in preparation for my own catalogue. In a large number of cases what had seemed to be duplicates turned out to be not merely different issues of the same edition, but often entirely different editions, in entirely or partially different type setting, sometimes with slightly or greatly varying content. This could happen even in the case of a great and famous work, and when it comes to such popular writers as Franz Callenbach and Abraham a Sancta Clara, with their bewilderingly many variant issues and editions, it turns out that not only the von Faber catalogue is misleading as to first issues and editions, but that the specialized bibliographies of these authors are quite inadequate and erroneous. Indeed much remains to be done before we know the true printing and publishing history of even some of the standard literary works. One unfortunate result of recent years has been the fact that a disconcertingly large number of the reprints and new editions of Baroque works were overhastily based on copies that were assumed to be complete original editions but turned out to be something less adequate or less authentic than that. What a pity that the new edition of the poetic works of Abschatz is based on an incomplete copy and that von Loens important novel, Der Redliche Mann am Hofe, was not reprinted either from the first edition of 1740 or from the revised edition (second version) of 1751 but instead from one of the intervening reprints of no textual authority or reliability. The 1973 edition of the Rosicrucian Fama shows no awareness of the different issues of the first edition of 1614. It disregards the errata list appended to the one issue and the consequent corrections in the following issue; thus it perpetuates such corruptions as Worten for Wercken, imprimirt for incorporirt, Vocation for Oration, etc. And these are only three examples of the poor new editions that will not competently serve the purpose for which they were intended.
Through most of my career I collected Baroque books largely as an amateur, with no fixed program. The more professional side of my collecting was in the later eighteenth century and in the field of early Americana. Indeed I published nothing on the Baroque until 1962, though I did include it in my teaching program, conducted a number of seminars in the field, and directed several doctoral dissertations. Beyond that I simply enjoyed reading the books, roaming about in the period, and talking about it with friends. This casual collecting according to personal tastes and interests meant that I spent less effort on acquiring the standard and obvious works. Though in the natural course of events a large number of the famous works were added, I preferred to acquire the unknown and unusual of promise, feeling that I could content myself with the modern critical editions of the well known works. This was in part a mistake, of course, though doing the opposite would have been a greater mistake and a far less enriching experience, for, with all my love for rare books and fine bindings, I am less of a bibliophile than a reader and an explorer of the period. Thus there are many books, pamphlets, broadsides in the collection about which all the handbooks on the period are silent, but which nevertheless have their contributions to make to our understanding of the Baroque. To be sure, this is to a large extent also the case with the von Faber collection, which contains dozens of authors and hundreds of prints about which there is little or no further information to be found even though some of them are of true literary quality and interest.
One particular problem I faced arose out of the phenomenon of the pamphlet volumes, sometimes huge cubes that can contain up to and even beyond fifty separate imprints, often over a widely diverse range of dates, places, and subjects. I would sometimes buy such a ponderous volume because it contained one indispensable work and perhaps also two or three further desirable works. When I started preparing my catalogue, I seriously considered omitting the other less pertinent, less interesting works. But again and again I found that a work I had considered a sure candidate for oblivion would on closer inspection prove to be of more than usual interest and at times even lead to an important literary judgment or insight. I was even more impressed with the fallacy of quick judgments and subjective verdicts when a young scholar exploring the library came upon a book that I thought had some architectural and topographical but small literary interest; he explained to me delightedly that it was a key work in the literary research he was carrying on, one that he had almost despaired of being able to find. Until the cataloguing I had hardly looked into several huge theological volumes that I had been obliged to purchase, along with some desired works, from the estate of an old Indiana physician. What I found, for instance, in Johann Gerhards Loci Theologici in the way of essential literary information, even in the brief time I could spend with it, still fills me with astonishment. Of course, the work goes far beyond such incidentals to being a panoramic representation, a Summa, of the Lutheran Baroque mentality, secular as well as religious. And yet, who in our century has read Johann Gerhard, though in his own century he was famous even in distant England and New England, and who nowadays really knows the Baroque mentality? Thus humbled by repeated experiences, I concluded that I did not know enough about the Baroque to pass final judgment, especially negative judgment, on its works. With this came the decision to include all of my Baroque imprints, even the adventitious ones, with the exception only of a few that turned out to be seriously defective. I agreed with von Faber that it was well to include the slightly defective works, for there are some instances in which all known copies of a book are variously defective or significantly divergent, and there are some that turn out to be unique or nearly so. My König-Telemann oratorio, for instance, lacks a prefatory leaf; a search through the German libraries failed to turn up another copy, though I later found that there is one at the British Museum.
All through the course of my collecting I was naturally always on the alert for early German works of American interest, not just Americana of the kind that are listed in Sabin and the other bibliographies (though these interested me also), but more especially the literary and imaginative Americana that illustrate the impact of the New World upon the thought and vision of the Old World. To mention just a few highlights, the first German translation of a larger New England work was Peter von Streithagens of John Cottons Way of Life, Heidelberg, 1662, though further translations soon followed. The novels about America range from the Bisselius of 1647 (always erroneously recorded in bibliographies) to the one by "Briontes" of 1736, known only by title (The Charming American Lady) during the past century and our own, with no copy found until the 1950s. The important Americana in Zesen, Rist, Lohenstein have been largely unnoticed--and so on. The ultimate result was that this collection may contain the largest single group of German Baroque Americana in private hands, with only a few public collections superior in this respect. This was the part of the library of which I made earliest use in my research and writing. The notes on the catalogue cards will usually, though not always, indicate the kind of Americana present in a given work.
Anglo-German literary relations, another special concern of mine, will be seen to be far more interesting and important during this period than the modern handbooks indicate. Particularly neglected has been the field of German-to-English relations, about which the firm prejudice remains that they were insignificant--this despite the fact that through the decades isolated instances of highly important German literary influences have been noticed. Further unnoticed ones will serve to show that those can no longer be thought of as exceptions; rather they are symptomatic of more widely spread tendencies that are just beginning to be explored. The present collection can also make numerous contributions to a better understanding of English-to-German literary relations, though this will require individual exploration since only certain characteristic specimens are mentioned in the notes. No one seems to realize, for instance, what an important part several of the Nürnberg poets played in the movement in both directions. Better known is the role of the prominent London Germans, though here too much remains to be done, as several books in the collection will indicate. Much is already known about the role of the Hamburg Germans, but not nearly enough about the role of the Hamburg Englishmen. One of the most attractive figures is the bilingual Thomas Lediard who is represented in this collection by two very different works, one of them of quite special importance and rarity. That leaves several noteworthy phases still unmentioned.
Another field that has long held a special fascination for me is the field of art and, inevitably for the Baroque, the many and intricate relations between literature and art, art at that time of course still including technology, the practical arts. In the collection are not only the stately illustrated volumes on art and architecture, the splendid festival and memorial volumes, the emblem books (about half of them unrecorded in Praz and Landwehr), the theatrical volumes, especially for the Baroque opera of Hamburg and Vienna (though also for the school drama and the popular drama), here is also a small selection from the three thousand engravings of the former Kielmannsegg collection, these (with some later additions) chosen to illustrate the Baroque relationship between poetry and picture. A further result has been new light on several well known poets. One of the special strengths lies in the extensive collection of the works of the Augsburg engravers, some bound together in large contemporary volumes, others occurring as separate prints. In the last decades of the seventeenth and especially during the early decades of the eighteenth century the Augsburg school came to a flowering of European significance. Brian Reade in Signature (1951) was able to demonstrate by careful comparative dating that the Rococo style and its characteristic formal elements originated in Augsburg during the first decades of the new century, well before the first true signs of it could be observed in France. And so another monumental truism collapses.
In the field of music the library holdings are less extensive, though rich in those aspects that relate it to literature. There is an especially large assemblage of the texts that were set to Baroque music: operas, oratorios, cantatas, songs. In the Vopelius there is the music as well as the words for Johann Hermann Scheins Passion according to St. Matthew, the one according to St. John, his Easter Cantata, and further compositions by him, Schütz, Praetorius, and others. Elsewhere there are a number of compositions set to worldly texts as well as some instances of a combination of picture, word, and music in a Baroque approach to a Gesamtkunstwerk. Most interesting perhaps are the several literary works by Baroque musicians, with Johann Matthesons philosophical fiction of a perpetually clouded island the strangest and most haunting of all.
One grave lack in Baroque scholarship has been a full-rounded account of German literary criticism. Bruno Markwardt and others have indeed done significant pioneer work, but the relation of that which is presently known to that which can and needs to be known is fractional. It may be symptomatic that Lessing was well aware of some of his Baroque predecessors that modern scholars seem to have forgotten. Perhaps the chief reason for the fragmentary nature of our knowledge is that the material is hidden away in the most improbable places: prefaces, appendices, footnotes, with important contributions even in religious and political works, as well as in others whose titles give no inkling of their rich and varied contents. One extreme example is the Pindar commentary by Erasmus Schmid, 1616, that I acquired for its discourse on America and the Fortunate Isles, only to find that it also contained reflections, with examples, on the introduction of Greek classical measures into German poetry. At the other end of the period is the long-lived Daniel Wilhelm Triller whose fame as a poet has faded but whose qualities as a literary critic have not even been suspected. And in between the two there are at least a few dozen whose literary criticism is deserving of our perusal. The notes on the catalogue cards call attention to much (though not all) of the hitherto neglected material that will eventually, it is to be hoped, contribute to an adequate survey of early German literary criticism. Also in the matter of the development of German literary history our perspectives are greatly in need of readjusting to the far wider range actually achieved during the period. Interesting and at times important observations on comparative literature occur at a much earlier date than anyone has suspected.
Another group of works that early caught my attention are the periodicals, chiefly the literary and general periodicals, but also the scientific, political, and theological, for in that era without fixed boundaries one can never tell where something of literary value may be found. Typical is the arch-conservative but brilliantly edited theological journal of Löscher, the Unschuldige Nachrichten, with its wealth of literary and critical material. Included in the collection are unique copies of some periodicals, one of prime literary importance, and even some that are totally unrecorded, such as a weekly devoted exclusively to emblematology.
Beyond the Americana, the art books, the literary criticism, the periodicals, numerous other fields are represented that make their larger or smaller contributions to our understanding of the age and its literature. There are, for instance, the bibliographical and biographical works, the book catalogues of the era, the reference works, both the standard ones and the less known or even unknown ones, some of true importance in the study of the literary Baroque. There are the popular broadsides, pamphlets, and books with their varied content of jokes, anecdotes, proverbs, riddles, games, songs, instruction, folk lore and superstition. There is one folk book, for instance, that gives us the first reliable information about the time and place of origin of the Siegfried folk book; all the various guesses, inferences, and conclusions of this and the previous century are quite wrong. There are books and pamphlets by the common man as well as for the common man, since the German lands were pioneers in the establishment of general education for all, female as well as male. Women authors are well represented. One of the large and important groups is that of the occulta, again including extreme rarities and some unique copies: alchemy, Rosicrucianism, magic, mysticism (religious, scientific, pansophic); among them are three periodicals, two pro-occult, one sharply anti-occult--altogether material that could and did stir the literary imagination, with a few works that themselves rise to true literary heights. Furthermore, there are the extremists such as Edelmann and the poetic experimentalists such as Schad. There are such oddities as a typographical palace and a poetic labyrinth. There is the strangely vituperative defense of poetry by Höveln. There is a book on ghosts that has a title page and immediately after it its Doppelgänger, and another book with a title that extends over four pages. A later edition of the poems of Esmarch finds the authors name mysteriously transformed into March. And the Nürnberg hymn writer Schwämlein is suddenly transformed into a humorous poet. Werlhof and his friends in the midst of the carnival revelries turn out one quarto broadside poem after the other. Then there are two different mock periodicals, each entitled Acta Semi Eruditorum.
In the end, the main field, to which so much from the other fields is ancillary, is the literary, though here not only the standard volumes of poetry, drama, and novel, but also unknown works by well known authors, unknown and unexplored works by little known, pseudonymous, or unknown authors, occasionally of unexpected quality. The famous writers are represented not only by well known works but also, as in the case of Opitz, Zesen, and Lohenstein, by extreme rarities, or, as in the case of Harsdörffer, Moscherosch, or Abraham a Sancta Clara by hitherto unknown works. There is the long lost and even doubted 1703 edition of Hunolds poems, important because of the expurgations and revisions in later editions. And there is the most beautiful of all Jacob Boehme editions, London, 1764-81, with all the intricate movable parts on the engravings intact. Then there are the works of quality by authors now obscure but likely to become better known in the future. There is the sophisticated nobleman Mahrenholz, the scholarly intellectual Hagelgans with some quite unexpected flights of the poetic imagination, the political economist Marperger and the local historian Vieth with further poetic surprises, Colonel Arnold the Austrian Klaj, Gottlob Zipfel the Lusatian innovator, and Esmarch the elegant epigrammatist. There are important new findings to be made in the novel, some fictional biographies, for example, pointing the way to the more realistic historical novel to come. Especially in the novella is there the possibility of important new discoveries, for some of the stories are tucked away in the most improbable of places. There are real surprises left in the now diligently cultivated field of the satire, though perhaps the greatest surprises lie in the field of the essay. The recent surveys and studies simply take it for granted that the German essay does not even exist so early. Actually the essays are there, sometimes well hidden under other labels, but no one has bothered to look for them because everyone was so utterly certain that they could not be there.
There are two further contributions that a library such as this, or the similarly catholic, unrestricted library of von Faber, can make toward the better understanding of Baroque literature. In the first place, the sharp distinction between what we now call literature, schöne Literatur, belles lettres, and other writings, though it is legitimate enough later in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, is of minor pertinence and indeed largely anachronistic for the Baroque period. Hardly anyone at that time made such divisive distinctions; one cannot even understand the poem, drama, or novel of the period if one artificially separates it from its literary matrix. Above all, one cannot possibly attain to a true picture of the development of the new German prose, for this had its origin in certain scientific and religious works. The present collection contains examples of classic German prose by authors whose names would be recognized by but few people in our time. Even later and elsewhere similar phenomena of great prose in non-literary genres can be observed, for instance in the England between 1772 and 1797. During this full quarter of a century there were only a few poems, a few comedies, no tragedies, no novels that have any literary rank or quality that can be taken seriously. And yet, English literature was not "dead" during that time; on the contrary, it produced some of its greatest literary prose, even though in forms and fields that the later centuries no longer considered distinctly "literary." Thus if we abandon such anachronistic criteria and formalistic distinctions, and instead employ more appropriate historical and artistic perspectives, we can better open the way to that which remains universal in literature through the ages: the feeling for quality, for the sovereign articulation and continuity, for the masterful form, for the poetic tension, in other words, the connoisseurship that immediately reacts to great literature, wherever it is found, no matter who wrote it, no matter what the critical consensus about work or author may be.
And this brings us to the final contribution that such collections can make. They can, it is to be hoped, help break down the old accepted canon of "standard Baroque authors." When one looks back and observes the absurdly accidental and whimsical way in which this canon came into being during the past centuries, one can only wonder how it managed to maintain itself so long. And when one looks at the standard authors themselves, one has to conclude that not a few of them should be allowed to retire backstage and make room for others still waiting in the wings, others who can for quality and mastery maintain a place, modest or exalted, alongside the great masters who have continuingly and justly belonged to the true canon of German Baroque literature. Hardest to rescue are the works of quality to which no known author can be attached; again and again, during the past century and more, literarily sensitive critics and scholars have reported with delight the discovery of such works, but inevitably these have slipped back again into oblivion--a few to be rescued another time, only again to slip back into oblivion. But also known authors of quality and their works have suffered a similar fate. The time has come for a general reappraisal, and when several more of the great public collections have been unlocked with adequate catalogues and critical commentary, the means will be there for such a reappraisal.
A Note From the Publisher
When we began filming the Jantz collection, we had already filmed the Yale Collection of German Baroque Literature, using the catalogue prepared by Curt von Faber du Faur as our guide. There are some books which are in both collections. The decision was made not to refilm those items which had already been filmed as part of the Yale Collection. These items are identified by a reference such as the following:
For Jantz No. 2812: see von Faber No. 196
We have tried to complete names whenever possible, but there remain a few entries which have only initials or a last name with no first name known. Whenever there is any doubt about the name or attribution, the entry is followed by a question mark.