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(Waldseemüller Forgery) Bavarian State Library and Wolfgang Jahn Publish Book-Length Report on the Forgery: Geschichte Einer Fälschung

16 October 2019

Wolfgang Jahn, in association with publisher Allitera and the Bavarian State Library, has completed and published his account of the Waldseemüller Globe Gore forgery at the Bavarian State Library and the one offered for sale by Christie's in 2017.


Though we have not read the complete text (available only in German), the book includes an English-language summary that elucidates some mysteries that remained after the initial discovery in late 2017.


Importantly, Jahn confirms several connections that we previously hypothesized but are now known to have occurred. Namely, we now know that Richard H. Zinser (1884-1984) the old master print dealer, was engaged by the Prince of Lichtenstein to sell the initial (genuine) Gores to James Ford Bell; that Zinser was closely connected with Arthur Bruno Drescher (relative of the consignor of the Christie's forgery); and that Zinser engaged Drescher to restore the Lichtenstein Gores before their sale to James Ford Bell in 1954.


Jahn presents a compelling circumstantial case that Zinser and Drescher were behind both the BSB and Christie's forgeries, going so far as to say "[The forgery's] motive was subtle revenge on Hans P. Kraus for Kraus' allegations against Arthur B. Drescher and Richard H. Zinser." But then in a seeming about-face, Jahn concludes "It remains unknown which people were involved in the forgery."


author portrait

Alex Clausen