Title: The Nibelungenlied / The Song of the Nibelungs
Author: Unknown. Translated by Margaret Armour, Illustrations by Edy Legrand. Intro by Franz Schoenberner.
Publisher: The Limited Editions Club, 1960. Signed by the illustrator. Limited to 1500 copies, of which this is 784.
Condition: Hardcover, very tall and heavy. Book is in nearly flawless condition except for some very slight wear at the top and bottom of spine. Slipcase case some wear but is in good condition. Altogether a stunning, gorgeous book.
About this edition:
- Made at the ancient printing house of Joh. Enschede En Zonen in Haarlem-Holland from the typographic plans of Jan Van Krimpen
- Romulus, 14 point size on 16 point base on Simili Japon paper produced at the Royal Paper Mill by Van Gelder & Zonen N.V. of Ansterdam – Holland
- Title and Initials drawn by S.L. Hartz
- Illustrations reproduced by The Photogravure & Color Company in New York and hand-colored through stencils in the studio of Walter Fischer
- Binding designed by Arnold Bank; done by Russell-Rutter Company of New York on Rache-black fabric stamped in rust and gold
- 7 3/4″ x 11 3/4″, 312 pages
About the book:
The Nibelungenlied, translated as The Song of the Nibelungs, is an epic poem in Middle High German, written sometime in the 13th century but with much older origins.
The story tells of dragon-slayer Siegfried at the court of the Burgundians, how he was murdered, and of his wife Kriemhild’s revenge.
The Nibelungenlied is based on pre-Christian Germanic heroic motifs (the “Nibelungensaga”), which include oral traditions and reports based on historic events and individuals of the 5th and 6th centuries. Old Norse parallels of the legend survive in the Völsunga saga, the Prose Edda, the Poetic Edda, the Legend of Norna-Gest, and the Þiðrekssaga.
In 2009, the three main manuscripts of the Nibelungenlied were inscribed in UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register in recognition of their historical significance.
An early critic labeled it a German Iliad, arguing that, like the Greek epic, it goes back to the remotest times and unites the monumental fragments of half-forgotten myths and historical personages into a poem that is essentially national in character.
Imagery from the Nibelungelied was used in many poems, essays, posters and speeches at every stage in the development of German nationalism.
The Nibelungenlied, Thidreks saga and the Völsunga saga served as source materials for Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen (English: The Ring of the Nibelung), a series of four music dramas popularly known as the “Ring Cycle”.