Detail View: Manuscripts:

A book of arms on paper principally relating to the Holy Roman Empire, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia, but also including fictional arms of moral exempla: personalities from history and the Bible famous for their good or bad deeds. It appears to be executed by the hand of the illustrator styled the 'Exempla Master', a contributor of several sections to the Codex Cotta (also known as the Ingeram Codex) housed at the Waffensammlung des Kunsthistorischen Museums in Vienna (MS A 2302). This latter manuscript, a similar collection of arms, was commissioned by Duke Albert VI of Austria (1418-1463) and completed in 1459, as evidenced by its datable arms and an inscription by Hans Ingeram, the other artist responsible for its contents: see Die Wappenbücher Herzog Albrechts VI von Österreich, ed. C. Becher and O. Gamber (1986). Lambeth MS 774, on the other hand, seems to have been produced a decade earlier, after 1447 and probably before 1450. Its sequence of popes ends with Nicholas V (1447-1455) where the Codex Cotta has Calixtus III (1455-1458); it provides the arms of Frederick III (1415-1493) as King of the Romans (1440-1452), where the Codex Cotta has him as crowned Holy Roman Emperor (1452); and it includes Conrad von Erlichshausen as the most recent Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights (1441-1449). The terminus ante quem is difficult to establish, however, as numerous arms that would have been outdated by 1447 are included in the volume. An inspection of the paper's watermarks reveals the same bull and cross design found in the Codex Cotta, a mark attributed to the paper mills of Engen near Konstanz (the closest match to the Lambeth marks is C. M. Briquet, Les filigranes: dictionnaire historique des marques du papier de`s leur apparition vers 1282 jusqu'en 1660, facsimile ed. A. Stevenson, 4 vols. (1968), no. 15234, found at Ulm in 1441 and Augsburg in 1449). ff. 1r-4v. Exempla, three shields to a page. Begins incomplete with 'das sind drÿ mildosten fursten' (the three most generous princes): Magnus III of Sweden (r. 1275-1290), Duke Leopold VI of Austria (r. 1198-1230) and Hermann I, Landgrave of Thuringia (r. 1190-1217). This is f. xv of the Codex Cotta. Continues with the three most patient (Alphonso X of Castile, r. 1252-1284, St. Eustace and Job), the three most impatient (Antiochus IV Epiphanes, Basileus of the Seleucid Empire 175-164 BC, Emperor Nero, r. 54-68, and King Nebuchadnezzar, r. 605-562 BC, whose arms are here portrayed differently than in the Codex Cotta), the three heathen emperors (of the Tartars, the Saracens and the Greeks), and a variety of further historical and mythical kings (Pepin, r. 752-768, Prester John, Hannibal of Carthage etc.). Folio 5 blank; f. 6: municipal arms (Rome, Florence, Bologna, Strasburg, Cologne, Basel etc.); f. 7r: arms of the emperor of Constantinople. ff. 7v-9r. Popes (one to a page): Martin V (1417-1431), Eugenius IV (1431-1447), Felix V (antipope 1439-1449), and Nicholas V (1447-1455), with inscription 'O Mater sancte ecclesÿe'. ff. 9v-13r. Holy Roman Empire and the imperial electors (one to a page). Only the three spiritual electors have been completed (the archbishops of Mainz, Cologne and Trier). There follow four preparatory sketches, presumably the four lay electors (ff. 11v-13r), and then seven mostly blank folios with some sketches and ruled lines, at least some of which have apparently been bound upsidedown (ff. 14-20). ff. 21v-23r. Miscellaneous arms, including the 'graff von zÿli zu ortenburg'; badges of Duke Albert VI of Austria, Ladislaus, King of Hungary (r. 1444-1457), Christopher III of Denmark, Sweden and Norway (r. 1440-1448) and the Order of the Dragon; a generic shield of the Holy Roman Empire, linked to Emperor Sigismund (r. 1433-1437) in an accompanying inscription; and the arms of Frederick III as King of the Romans (r. 1440-1452). ff. 23v-35v. Arms of foreign kings (one to a page), starting with the three annointed (gesalbten) kings (of France, Denmark and Hungary), and including mythical arms such as those of the 'king of Morocco' (f. 34r) and the 'king of India' (f. 35r). The arms are mostly generic, but a few individuals are represented: Christopher III of Denmark, Sweden and Norway (f. 24r), Ladislaus of Hungary and Bohemia (r. 1444-1457, f. 24v), and possibly Ladislaus II Jogaila of Poland (r. 1399-1434, f. 33v). ff. 36r-149v. Arms of noble houses (one to a page), mainly within the Empire but also in Eastern Europe and Scandinavia. Mostly generic with a few named individuals, including Duke Otto III of Brunswick (r. 1330-1352, f. 39r), Vytautas, Grand Duke of Lithuania (r. 1392-1430, f. 46v: with inscriptions relating to King Casimir IV of Poland (r. 1447-1492, also Grand Duke of Lithuania 1440-1492) and the murder of Grand Duke Sigismund in 1440), Alexander von Masowien, Prince-Bishop of Trent (r. 1424-1444, f. 49v), Friederich von Stoffenberg (f. 128r), and 'Dominus Johannes noster' (f. 143), perhaps referring to John Hunyadi, regent of Hungary (1446-1453). Folios 150-4 are blank. ff. 153r-161r. Episcopal arms (four to a page), including sees from throughout the Empire, the Low Countries, Scandinavia, and the fictional 'bÿschoff von ÿrland' (f. 160v). The arms of Konstanz and Chur are represented as linked (f. 156): Heinrich von Höwen was bishop of Konstanz and apostolic administrator of Chur during the period 1441-1456. The arms of Bamberg and Lebus are similarly linked, and a note records that 'Anthony and Christopher von Rottenham are both brothers and bishops' (Anthony was Bishop of Bamberg 1431-1459, Christopher was Bishop of Lebus 1424-1436). Trier and Speyer are also linked, but no obvious connection is apparent. Folios 162-7 blank. ff. 168r-173r. Military Orders (mostly four to a page). The series begins with a representation of the arms of the Teutonic Knights, including the then current Grand Master, Conrad von Erlichshausen (r. 1441-1449), and the arms of the Landmeister for the Empire (Eberhard von Saunsheim, fl. 1430s-1440s) and the Landmeister for Livonia (Heinrich von Vincke, r. 1438-1450). Folios 168v through 171v contain the successive Grand Masters of the Order, numbered 1 to 27, from Heinrich Walpot (r. 1198-1200) to Conrad von Erlichshausen, who is followed with a blank shield numbered 28. On f. 172v is depicted the arms of the Knights Hospitaller, including the Grand Master of Rhodes, the preceptor of Isenheim, and the 'Antonier meister'. A single shield on f. 173r represents the arms of the (unnamed) Grand Master of the Order of St. James of Compostella. Folios 174-5 are blank. f. 176r-v. Municipal arms (nine to a page) from the Low Countries (including Dordrecht, Middelburg, 's-Hertogenbosch, Leiden, Ghent, Antwerp etc.) Folio 177 blank except for some pen trials on the verso. ff. 178r-181v. Arms of offices and special dignities of the Empire (four to a page). Includes the 'four dukes' (Swabia, Brunswick, the Palatinate of the Rhine and Lorraine), the 'four margraves' (Brandenburg, Meyssen, Baden and Mähren), the 'four towns' (Augsburg, Mainz, Lubeck and Achen) and the 'four villages' (Schletstatt, Bamberg, Ulm and Hagenau), amongst others. Folios 182-4 blank.