Taking over from Virgil Solis after his death, Jost Amman took over the commission of Sigmund Feyerabend's prolific print shop and cut his own drawings to accompany this incredibly popular edition of the Bible.
In competition with the Luther Bible (first issued in 1560), Feyerabend added a subject index and printed marginal explanations and catchwords, which proved to be an extremely successful strategy. The Frankfurt editions of this Bible were in high demand and printed numerous times.
This popularity can partly be attributed to the majesty of Amman's woodcut illustrations. Inspired by the drawings of likes of Hans Bocksberger and Maarten van Heemskerck, the woodcuts are full of Amman's passion, densely packing human figures, animals, vegetation and architicture into a single woodcut. The title page is especially indicative of this abundant style, showing an arrangement of five scenes from the Old Testament: the Creation, Noah’s Ark, Drunken Noah and his Daughters, Moses receiving the Tablets of Law and the Tower of Babel – all interspersed with scroll work and other Renaissance ornaments.
Adding to the luxury of this copy, the woodcuts are enganced with a princely binding and illumination with gold, known as Fürstenkolorit.
See this item in our catalogue, Early Printed Bibles.