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may be fairly expected I should declare the cause should be called “Figuræ Typicæ Veteris atque to which I attribute this sad, and much to be Antitypicæ Novi Testamenti, seu Historiæ Jesu deplored confusion, and to explain how it has, in Christi in figuris." This hesitation, however, did my judgment been brought about.
not suit the bolder Heinecken, who accordingly, To that inquiry I unhesitatingly answer, the in 1771, whilst basking in the serenth heaven of " St. Christopher" called " of 1423”-that stum his infatuated pride, and the fulness of his self-conbling block upon which so many literary reputa- stituted tinsel glory as the discoverer of “the tions are destined to be sacrificed—that “Will oldest known engraving with a date," definitively o' the wisp " which has enticed so much talent decreed the volume should be thenceforth known astray, and created so many credulous victims. as the Biblia Pauperum ; and as anything in the Let us, however, hope that any further immola- | shape of opposition to his fiat was then wholly tions on the altar of “St. Christopher" may | out of the question, it was obeyed, and, as may become unnecessary, by all future writers on reasonably be expected, gave rise to the most “ Early Engraving and Printing" (with a whole- ludicrous conclusions, one of which was created some dread of their predecessors' errors) promi- | by the well-known bibliographer, the Rev. T. H. nently exposing Heinecken's folly, as a beacon of Horne, who described it as — warning to be hereafter carefully avoided, as well
“ A kind of catechism of the Bible, executed for the use as by recommending that the admiration of the
of young persons, and of the common people (whence its “St. Christopher" should be limited to the talent name, • The Bible of the Poor')!! who were thus enabled displayed in the engraving itself; which, for
to acquire, at a low price, a knowledge of some of the reasons I explained in 1864 at the Archæological |
I onlained in 1864 at the Archmolooiril events recorded in the Scriptures.” Institute, I most firmly believe to be the work of | Bearing in mind that Mr. Noel Humphreys, in Albrecht Dürer.
his History of Early Printing to the Middle of the The mention of that illustrious name reminds Sixteenth Century (London, 1867, p. 39), has renme of the immediate cause which has led to these tured to declare the Biblia Pauperum to be the observations, viz. that, in the course of my remarks work of Lawrence Coster (1410-1420);—and that upon the painted windows in Fairford church, I the book is printed in Latin, with frequent abbreventured to declare that the same band which viations of the most difficult character, which painted the windows, produced the “Block Book” it would puzzle good scholars at the present day commonly known under the misnomer of the to explain ; and one of two things must be deduced Biblia Pauperum, in which statement I have since therefrom, either that our estimate of the state of . been point-blank contradicted. If, therefore, I education of the poor throughout Holland and here expressly allude to the subject, it is for the Germany, in the early part of the fifteenth cenpurpose of repeating that statement; and of adding tury, has been sadly underrated, or, that which that, if any value whatever be attached to reason, I think will be more readily believed, viz.: that common sense, and logical deduction, I intend to the whole statement is a "nursery tale" from bemake good my declaration all the dated or un- | ginning to end, and only suited to the compredated block or other books invoked against me | hension of that celebrated corps who are popunon obstante. Although, therefore, my observa- larly imagined to be ready to swallow, without tions will in general apply to the whole series and hesitation or difficulty, any “ canard," however range of " Block Books," my remarks will, for the gross or improbable. reason I have stated, to some extent be especially Believing that the class of readers who studs directed to the Biblia Pauperum-which I may, "N. & Q." renders it wholly unnecessary I should in all fairness, state, I shall venture to insist was enter upon any explanation as to what are meant executed by the same artist as produced the | by “ Block Books," I will simply refer to the Canticum and the Speculum—and that such artist singularly limited number of which we have any was Albrecht Dürer, and none other. The ap knowledge, and remark that all were confined to parent boldness of this declaration may make religious subjects. some smile and others sneer; but, borne up by Among the tests by means of which I purpose the strongest belief in the correctness of my to arrive at a satisfactory conclusion as to the theory, I shall persevere to the end, and if fairly possibility of the “ Block Books" having existed, beaten, confer upon my conqueror all the glory as alleged, in the latter part of the fourteenth which attaches to a hard-earned victory.
century-or indeed at any time before printing Prior to entering on the subject of the “ Block with moveable types—I invite a careful considerBooks" as a “gradus” in the history of printing, ation of the state of education, both here and it may here be convenient to introduce a few | abroad, during that time. words upon the volume commonly described as The end of the fourteenth and the commencethe Biblia Pauperum. Meerman, in 1765, timidly ment of the fifteenth century was a period of proposed this senseless title; but fearing that pos- | intellectual darkness in England. Schools were sibly it might not be accepted, he suggested it very rare, and the system of education as defec
tive as it is well possible to imagine. The young proper size, of course took much longer in the first inmen received such instruction as they could pick
stance than the writing and drawing by hand of a single up in monasteries, or at the universities then
page on parchment or paper; Lut, when once executed,
| a number of impressions to any eatent could be rapidly existing. In those times writing, and a smatter
taken from it.” ing of Latin, formed the staple accomplishments in learning ; but the general ignorance was so I will here invite my readers to accompany me great, that Fitzherbert recommended to gentle for a few moments into that “ region of fancy” in men unable to commit notes to writing the practice which our instructors in early printing and engraof " notching a stick” to assist their memory. Sving have so delighted to disport themselves, and
On the Continent education fared no better let us imagine we have turned back the hand of than here, notwithstanding the universities at Time and arrived at Heidelberg (any other univerPrague, Vienna, Heidelberg, Cologne, Erfurt, sity will do as well) on the first of April, 1410, Leipzig, Rostock, Louvain, &c.; which, by the and there found a goodly assemblage of students in way, were far more appropriated to the use of the law, physic, and divinity. Let us enter for a professors, doctors, &c., than for resident pupils. moment the class-room of Dr. Quibble, Professor The immense disadvantage under which learning of Law, and there we shall find him reading aloud then laboured may be mainly ascribed to the from the MS. required for the lesson, and his want of books, whereby every student was com- pupils all busily engaged in writing to his dictapelled to go the pace dictated by the master, or tion as fast and as legibly as they can, with an be altogether distanced. Thus, on the pupils occasional notch on a stick to make up for lost being assembled, the preceptor took from the time. Let us go thence to the lecture-room of college or university library the MS. required Dr. Bolus, Professor of Physic, and we shall wit(which in all probability was the only one avail-ness a similar scene; but on entering the study of able for the purpose), and read therefrom such | Dr. Cant, Professor of Divinity, we shall find the portion as constituted the lesson for the moment. worthy man quietly engaged on his own occupaAs a matter of course, he who could not write tions (probably correcting one of those "editions" fast enough, and well enough to read it when of the Biblia or Speculum upon which Heinecken, written, had no chance. Hence the value of Sotheby, et hoc genus omne, have since so furiFitzherbert's recommendation, to which I have ously disputed), and every pupil learning his alluded—“If you cannot write rapidly and clearly, lesson from a printed paper, an impression taken cut your stick," and afterwards get some good- from a “block.” Would you not immediately set natured fellow student to help you with the rest. down Doctors Quibble and Bolus as a couple of With but one MS. between master and pupils, blockheads ? and, entre nous, do you not think what greater boon could possibly be imagined, those who have so zealously endeavoured to make under such circumstances, than a book containing us believe that such a state of things could posthe lesson to be learned, and which each pupil sibly have existed have dealt with us on that could study in his own inanner? It was by the footing, whilst in reality the shoe should have system I have described, that law, physic, theo- been on the other foot ? logy, classics, and the other branches of learning, | Fortunate divinity, have the good things of were doled out in homeopathic doses to the this life always fallen to your share, and your rising generation : and yet, if the advocates of the peas been carefully boiled, whilst your fellowgradations which led to "printing with moveable pilgrims have had to plod on in pain and distress types” are to be believed, a ready means then at each step? Did you really have the exclusive existed, under their very eyes, by which all those use of such blessings in 1410 as Biblia Pauperums disadvantages and drawbacks could have been ef- for the poor, who could not read them-Cantifectually overcome, and their every want supplied cums, Speculums, Donatuses, and all the ready apwithout difficulty, with the certainty that the pliances of education ? and was there any legismost beneficial results would be instantly attained. lative enactment which would have prevented I, of course, mean the system of the “ Block Quibble and Bolus from having the same advanBooks." As Mr. Ottley has told us :
tage? Was the system of printing from blocks “ No expensive apparatus was required in that mode
is required in that mode the exclusive privilege of your order? Many of printing; and their blocks being once engraved, they other equally pertinent questions readily present could at any time take off as few or as many copies of | themselves, but it is needless to put them or to ruffle their works as they chose or had an immediate demand
Dr. Cant's amour propre in the slightest degree,
and for the simple reason that the worthy doctor On the same point we also learn from Mr. Noel had them not, and that both he and his pupils Humphreys, our latest authority, in p. 37 of his stood exactly on the same footing as his learned History, &c.:
brothers Quibble, Bolus, and their classes. Like “ This process, viz, that of engraving both the illus- Joe Miller's Cornish parson and his flock, they all tration and text on each page on a block of wood of the started fair.
Exchanging the land of dreams for that of fact, subjects, as well as learned works upon history, we find that if the writers upon the History of classics, theology, medicine, law, and the sciences. Printing be correct, there existed in the early From this the fact is self-apparent, that no sooner part of the fourteenth century a mode of printing had the means of disseminating knowledge and readily available to all who desired it, expedi instruction presented itself than, irrespective of tiously produced, and in any quantity, admirably cost, it was instantly appealed to with an earnadapted for educational purposes, and above all, estness and energy altogether fatal to the supcapable of being supplied at a mere nominal price position that, with the existence of a system of as compared with all their existing sources of printing by means of engraved blocks for half a knowledge. That mode was indeed the very century previous to printing with moveable types, thing of all others able to satisfy a great and the only result should have been a few pictorial growing want of the utmost urgency, and yet representations with accompanying text explanawhat do our teachers tell us was the nature and tions. extent to which such unbounded resources were As the crowning absurdity of all existing sysmade available? merely the production of a very tems, our sense of reason is outraged by being limited number of books on purely religious sub- asked to believe there was but one stride between jects, every one of them being wholly useless to the rude class of printing from blocks and the the poor and uneducated. Are we, in the second perfection of the art in the Psalmorum Codex, 1457; half of the nineteenth century, to be content with no intervening steps-nothing in the shape of such puerile reasoning, and to be bound by it? gradual improvement; but that absolute perfecDoes not our common sense at once convince us that tion was attained at once, and a standard of costly if books could have been produced from engraved production thereby established which altogether blocks prior to 1450, they would have been imme-swamped the useful productions of the more diately made available, and multiplied in sufficient | modest blocks. quantity to supply every existing want? Would 1 If any further argument be needed to comthe numerous students at the universities and plete the extinction of the existing theories, it schools have been content to be without them ? will be readily found in the incontrovertible and Would the monasteries have permitted their conclusive facts, that no trace of the existence library shelves to remain void of such desirable of a block book, can be found in the catalogues productions ? It is most difficult to believe it. of any European library, college, or monastery, The thirst for knowledge was great, the means of prior to 1485; and lastly, that no writer or author readily supplying it at a cheap rate were at hand, of any country ever described or alluded to the and yet we are asked to conclude that professors existence of such a thing as a “Block Book " until and students went without, and above all, that long after that date_two circumstances in thempublishers and engravers on wood were so blind selves so highly important and significant as to to their own interest as to limit the supply in half effectually give the coup de grace to the absurd a century to a few books on one subject!
pretentions hitherto set up by the advocates of all Again. we are seriously assured both by Mr. existing systems, who pretend that “ Block Books" Ottley and Mr. Noel Humphreys, in the plainest | preceded printing with moveable types. imaginable terms, that printing by moveable types Having thus, I submit, justified the charge I practically extinguished “Block Books”; that is made in the outset of my observations-viz. that to say, that cheap printing was superseded by dear every known system was, without any exception, printing, a maxim of all others the most repugnant needlessly shrouded in mystery, inconsistent with to modern ideas, and a gross violation of our com- common sense, absolutely antagonistic to truth mon understanding.
and reason, and consequently mischievous and Such a theory being incredible to the extent of delusive-I will in my next communication atimpossibility, should it any longer be tolerated, | tempt to fulfil my promise of replacing them with or rather ought it not to be henceforth denounced a theory more reasonable, simple, consistent, and as false and deceptive, and as such be uprooted | truthful than any which have preceded it. and destroyed ?
HENRY F. HOLT. In further support of the views I have ventured 6, King's Road, Clapham Park. to express, let me draw attention, by way of contrast, to the consequences which very soon flowed from the invention of printing with move
ANDREAS ALCIATUS. able types-viz. expensive as it undoubtedly was, ' It is a singular circumstance, and one which I every branch of learning eagerly sought to avail | believe has not been hitherto noticed, that whilst itself of the bounteous gift; and before the year very numerous editions, to the amount of seventy 1500 there were published in Latin, German, or eighty or even more, of the Emblems of Andreas French, Italian, and Greek, grammars, lexicons, Alciatus, or Alciat, were published in the various treatises on agricultural, military, and epistolary countries of Europe during the sixteenth and
early part of the seventeenth centuries, in France, The first edition of Alciat was printed at Germany. Holland, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, Milan in 1522, but I am not aware of the exist&c., not a single edition of them, even to the ence of any cony of this
ence of any copy of this. The earliest copy I present day, has ever been printed in our own | possess of this work is a very small one, concountry; and with the sole exception of a manu- | taining only ninety-eight emblems, printed at script version of them, made about the time of | Augsburg in 1531, which was given by Dr. Dibdin James I., formerly in the valuable emblematic | to the late Sir Francis Freeling, Bart.; and I shall collection of Joseph B. Yates, Esq. of the Dingle, be glad to learn if any other copy of this edition, near Liverpool, and now in that of H. Yates or one as early, exists in any of our libraries in Thompson, Esq., his grandson, and not containing | England, public or private.* The next edition to sufficient merit, I fear, to warrant its entire pub- | this was, I believe, one of several printed at Paris lication. I am not aware of any attempt having | by Christopher Wachel in 1534, which is also a been made to translate or print them in England. scarce impression and was
| scarce impression, and was followed by others in How is this to be accounted for, when Whitney's 1536, 1542, 1546, &c. The first French edition Emblems had been printed so early as 1586, and came also from the same press at Paris in 1536. those of Quarles, Peacham, Farley, Wither, and I am quite aware that some of our English emothers had appeared in the first half of the seven- | blem-writers availed themselves of those of Alciat, teenth century? It is difficult to understand why but that is no sufficient reason why we should not some of the more celebrated of the foreign emblem have a complete edition of his work from an writers were not reprinted and translated in this English press.
T. CORSER. country, when such works as Brandt's Ship of Fools, the Dialogues of Creatures Moralized, and above all, the Dance of Death by Hollar, and the
MORE FAMILY. Bible cuts of him and Holbein, had become so Some months ago I found the following entries, familiarised to us in our own language. It is relating to a family of the name of More, on two surprising, also, considering the great and wide blank leaves of a MS. in the Gale collection, in the interest excited by this class of literature abroad, library of Trinity College, Cambridge. The class the taste and ingenuity displayed in the en- mark of the volume is “0. 2. 21.” Its contents are graving the wit and scholarship brought out in very miscellaneous. Among other things is a copy the verses—and the general attraction of the sub-l of the poem of Walter de Biblesworth, printed by ject-that they should not have formed a portion Mr. Thomas Wright in his volume of Vocabularies of our own staple literature, and been made the from the Arundel MS. The date of this is early study of our own scholars and literati. Perhaps one fourteenth century. The names of former possescause may be the almost total disuse of the Latin sors of the volume are “Le: Fludd ” and “G. tongue at the present day, in which the great Carew;" the latter being probably Sir George majority of them are written, and its having be
Carew, afterwards Earl of Totness. The entries come so completely a dead language. But since which I have copied are on the last leaf and the the dispersion of the Marquis of Blandford's last leaf but one of the volume. I have added library at White Knights in 1819, who had col- the dates in square brackets, and expanded the lected a valuable series of emblem books, which contractions: formed one of the fasciculi of his privately printed "Md quod die dominica in vigilia Sancti Marce EvanCatalogue, and that of the Rev. Henry White of geliste Anno Regni Regis Edwardi quarti post conquestum Lichfield, who had a large collection of these Anglie quartodecimo Johannes More Gent, maritatus fuit books, which were sold with the entire library to Agneti filie Thome Graunger in parochia sancti Egidij
extra Crepylgate london. [24 April, 1474.7 Messrs. Harding, I am not aware of more than
" Med quod die sabbati in vigilia sancti gregorij pape two or three persons, at the most, who have de
inter horam primam & horam secundam post Meridiem voted their attention to this class of literature,
eiusdem diei Anno Regni Regis Edwardi quarti post of whom perhaps the chief, distinguished also conquestum Anglie xvo nata fuit Johanna More filia by his learning, refined taste, and knowledge of Johannis More Gent. [11 March, 1474-5.]
“Md quod die veneris proximo post Festum purificaforeign languages, is Sir William Stirling Max
cionis beate Marie virginis videlicet septimo die Februarij well, Bart., in his extensive and choice library at
inter horam secundam et horam terciam in Mane natus Keir. Now that the art of wood-engraving has been fuit Thomas More filius Johannis More Gent, Anno Regni brought to such great perfection, together with Regis Edwardi quarti post conquestum Anglie decimo the later discoveries of zincography and photo septimo. [7 Feb. 1477-8.]
«Ma quod die dominica videlicet vltimo die Januarij lithography, why should not we have a classical
inter horam septimam et horam octauam ante Meridiem edition of the Emblems of Alciat with the numer
Anno regni Regis Edwardi quarti decimo octauo nata fuit ous woodcuts ? and perhaps an English version of
Agatba filia Johannis More Gentilman. [31 Jan. 1478-9.] the same, accompanied by a bibliographical ac “Md quod die Martis videlicet vjto die Junij inter horam count of all the various editions, from the Claren decimam & horam vndecimam ante Meridiem natus fuit don Press at Oxford, or some of our other public presses or publishing societies ?
5* The edition of 1531 is in the British Museum.-E..] Johannes More filius Johannis More Gent. Anno regni Roper, who lived many years in his house and Regis Edwardi quarti vicesimo. [6 June, 1480.] | married his favourite daughter, or by any other “Med quod die lune viz. tercio die Septembris inter
of his biographers. The question, therefore, is horam secundam & horam terciam in Mane natus fuit
whether the authority of Cresacre More on this Edwardus Moore filius Johannis More Gent. Anno regni regis Edwardi iiijti post conquestum xxjo. [3 Sept.
point is to be admitted as absolute. He was not 1481.]
born till nearly forty years after Sir Thomas “Md quod die dominica videlicet xxijo die Septembris More's death, and his book was not written till anno regui regis Edwardi iiijti xxijo inter horam quartam
between eighty and ninety years after it. We & quintam in Mane nata fuit Elizabeth More filia Johan
must take into consideration these facts in estinis More Gent." [22 Sept. 1482.]
mating the amount of weight to be attached to It will be seen that these entries record the his evidence as to the name of his great-greatmarriage of a John More, gent., in the parish grandmother. church of St. Giles, Cripplegate, and the births of Were there then two John Mores of the rank his six children, Johanna, Thomas, Agatha, John, 1 of gentlemen, both apparently lawyers, living at Edward, and Elizabeth.
the same time in the same parish, and both having Now it is known that Sir Thomas More was three children bearing the same names; or was born, his biographers vaguely say, about 1480 in John More, who married Agnes Graunger, the Milk Street, Cheapside, which is in the parish of future Chief Justice and father of the future St. Giles, Cripplegate; that he was the son of Chancellor? To these questions, in the absence Sir John More, afterwards Lord Chief Justice, of Cresacre More's statement, the accumulation of who, at the time of his son's birth, was a barris- coincidences would have made it easy to give a ter, and would be described as “ John More, very positive answer. Is his authority to be gent.”; and that he had two sisters, Jane or Joané weighed against them? (Wordsworth’s Eccl. Biog. ii. 49), married to Stapylton's assertion that Sir Thomas More had Richard Staffertor, and Elizabeth, wife to John no brothers presents no difficulty, as they may Rastall the printer, and mother of Sir William bave died in infancy. The entries which I have Rastall (born 1508), afterwards Lord Chief Jus quoted would explain why he was called Thomas, tice of the Queen's Bench.
after his maternal grandfather. The third entry above given records the birth If any heraldic readers of KIN
If any heraldic readers of “N. & Q.” could find of Thomas, son of John More, who had been mar what are the arms quartered with those of More ried in the church of St. Giles, Cripplegate, and upon the Chancellor's tomb at Chelsea they would may be presumed to have lived in the parish. probably throw some light upon the question. The date of his birth is Feb. 7, 1477-8; that is, | Mr. Hunter describes them as “three bezants on a according to modern reckoning, 1478, and there chevron between three unicorns' heads." fore " about 1480.” Oddly enough, the day of the
WILLIAM ALDIS WRIGHT. week in this entry is wrong. It is Friday, which Trinity College, Cambridge. in 1477-8 was Feb. 6. But Thomas was born between two and three in the morning of Saturday, Feb. 7. The confusion is obvious and na CHAUCER'S “ CANTERBURY TALES.” tural.
FOLK-LORE AND THE BELIEF IN FAIRIES. The second and last entries record the births of The quotation from the Wife of Bath given by his sisters Johanna and Elizabeth. The former | J. H. C. (4th S. ii. 196), in which Chaucer, with of these names appears to have been a favourite a touch of irony, makes that heroine give the in the family of Sir John More, and was the “holy freres” and “ limitours" credit for banpame of his grandmother, the daughter of John ishing sprites and fairies from England, is not Leycester.
verified by Irish experiences. The "holy freres” I may add, that the entries are all in a contem- are nearly as numerous, and quite as powerful, as porary hand, and their formal character favours ever in Ireland, and yet the popular belief is, that the supposition that they were made by some one elves of all kinds abound in the country. The familiar with legal documents, and probably by a peasants here, too, like those of Scotland menlawyer.
tioned by J. H. C., avoid mentioning the word This remarkable series of coincidences led me “fairy," and use instead the complimentary term at first to believe that I had discovered the entry "good people," generally accompanying it with a of the birth of Sir Thomas More. But, upon in- / pious “God save us !” and the sign of the Cross. vestigation. I was met by a difficulty which at A ruined church in the neighbourhood of Tralee present I have been unable to solve. In the life was, according to antiquaries, originally a temple of the Chancellor by Cresacre More, his great consecrated by the Tuath da Dananns to the worgrandson, the name of Sir Thomas More's mother ship of the sun. A Lismore (great rath or fort) is said to have been “ Handcombe of Holliwell in and a Killeen (old burial-ground for unbaptized Bedfordshire.” This fact is not mentioned by children) are found in the same district, which