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Genealogy For The Twelve Tribes of Israel 

A fine engraving created for the Nuremberg Chronicle that illustrates the genealogy of the Twelve Tribes of Isreal. At the top left is Jacob, the biblical patriarch of Isreal and progenitor of 12 sons who led the 12 tribes. Each figure is depicted above a flower which attaches to a stem, illustrating how each person is related to Jacob in some way. This stylistic choice of displaying kinship via vines is a consistent theme throughout the Nuremberg Chronicle.  

The thirteen children of Jacob are the main feature of this engraving. Of these children, the most notable depiction is that of Joseph and his wife Mary.  Diana, the only daughter of Jacob, is depicted on the far right and is one of the only named women in the engraving. Although the women are mostly unnamed, they are often depicted holding the vine, indicating their role in childbirth and furthering the family line. 

This leaf comes from the 1493 Latin edition of Hartmann Schedel's seminal Nuremberg Chronicle which tells the history of the world from biblical to contemporary times. Schedel produced similar genealogy engravings for the Virgin Mary and rulers of the Holy Roman Empire

Condition Description
One sheet, printed verso-recto. Mild foxing as pictured. Toning along far right. Penciled annotation "74" at bottom of sheet.
Hartmann Schedel Biography

Hartmann Schedel (1440-1514) was a physician, book collector, and writer whose most famous work, the Liber Chronicarum (Nuremberg Chronicle), included some of the first printed views of many cities in Europe and across the world.

Schedel was born and died in Nuremberg, but he also traveled for his education. From 1456 to 1463 he lived in Leipzig, where he attended the University of Leipzig and earned his MA. From there he went to Padua, where he earned a Doctor of Medicine in 1466. After university, he worked for a time in Nördlingen and then returned to Nuremberg. In 1482 he was elected a member of the Great Council of Nuremberg.

The Chronicle was published in 1493. Besides this major work, one of Schedel’s most enduring legacies is his magnificent manuscript and printed book collection, one of the largest of the fifteenth century. In 1552, Schedel's grandson, Melchior Schedel, sold about 370 manuscripts and 600 printed works from Hartmann Schedel's library to Johann Jakob Fugger. Fugger later sold his library to Duke Albert V of Bavaria in 1571. This library is now mostly preserved in the Bayerische Staasbibliothek in Munich.

Among the surviving portions of Schedel's library are the records for the publication of the Chronicle, including Schedel's contract with Anton Koberger for the publication of the work and the financing of the work by Sebald Schreyer and Sebastian Kammermeister, as well as the contracts with Wohlgemut and Pleydenwurff for the original artworks and engravings. The collection also includes original manuscript copies of the work in Latin and German.