Dance of the Death (Danse Macabre) by Wilhelm Pleydenwurff from Schedel's world chronicle, printed in Nuremberg in 1493.

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The famouse Dance of Death or Danse Macabre is one of the most sought after leaves of the Nuremberg Chronicle by Hartmann Schedel. This woodcut is attribute occasionally to Albrecht Dürer. Leaf number CCLXIIII.

The woodblock cutters were Michael Wolgemut, the well-known teacher of Albrecht Dürer, and his stepson Wilhelm Pleydenwurff. Wohlgemut was Albrecht Dürer's tutor between 1486-90. Since the young Dürer was active in Wohlgemut's printer shop during the time the woodblocks for the Nuremberg Chronicle have been produced, he may also have collaborated, since some of the cuts bear a remarkably close resemblance to his Apocalypse illustrations.


CartographerHartmann Schedel
TitleImago Mortis
Publisher, YearAnton Koberger, Nuremberg, 1493
Plate Size19.2 x 22.6 cm (7.6 x 8.9 inches)
Sheet Size39.6 x 26.8 cm (15.6 x 10.6 inches)


Trimmed close at top just within the page number, small tear in right margin backed outside of the image, several small wormholes in margin, slightly stained. Very good condition. Good, strong impression.


Hartmann Schedel was born 1440 in Nuremberg. He studied in Leipzig and Padua several disciplines also Physics, Medicine and Laws. Neither his social position nor his business made him famous, but his major work the so called Schedel's World Chronicle. The incunable was issued 1493 in Latin, followed by the German edition in the same year. It contains more than 1800 woodcuts out of Michael Wolgemut woodcut shop. Albrecht Dürer completed an apprenticeship with Wolgemut around 1490, so even Dürer may has worked on these woodcuts. Many of the illustrations showing cities the first time ever. In 1497 the Small Schedel was printed by Johann Schönsperger in Augsburg, a reduced version of the Nuremberg print also smaller in size. Schedel died 1514 in Nuremberg.

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Hartmann Schedel: Imago Mortis.
Dance of the Death (Danse Macabre) by Wilhelm Pleydenwurff from Schedel's world chronicle, printed in Nuremberg in 1493.

Old Masters - Schedel, Hartmann - Imago Mortis

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