Ten Solomonic Engravings Cut from Sudermann's Hohe geistreiche Lehren und Erklärungen
Without assuming that Melville was aware of the 1622 publication by Sudermann from which ten of the images have been cut (he of course would have been aware of the source if he did do the cutting), I will present his images in the order in which they appear in that publication. Each new section of Sudermann’s text follows the standard format for the emblem book of his time. First the author (in this case Sudermann) presents the “inscription” (in this case the verse from the Song of Solomon to be interpreted). Then the artist (in this case van der Heyden) presents the “picture,” an engraved visualization of the inscription. Then the author (again Sudermann) presents his “subscription,” a literary or theological meditation or elaboration on the inscription and picture combined. Sudermann’s German-language inscriptions from successive verses of the Song of Solomon are taken from Luther’s Protestant translation of the Bible, first published complete in 1534. The English-language text of each verse that I present as the bracketed title of each print is from the King James translation of the Bible as Melville knew it, first published in 1611 (here cited in the version published by the Electronic Text Center at the University of Virginia). All engravings from the Sudermann text catalogued in this section can be examined in their original context in the complete facsimile electronic edition published by the Wolfenbüttel Digital Library in 2001. Immediately below is the page on which CAT 50 appears (fig. 1).
- Sources cited primarily in this section
- Bloch, Ariel and Chana. The Song of Songs: A New Translation with an Introduction and Commentary. New York: Random House, 1995.
- Goldberg, Michael. “Hortus Conclusis,” in The Song of Solomon: Love Poetry of the Spirit. Ed. Lawrence Boadt. New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1999. 31-34.
- Schön, Erhard. “Book Illustrations, Part 1,” vol. l of Hollstein’s German Engravings, Etchings, and Woodcuts, 1400-1700. Rotterdam: Sound & Vision, 2001.
- Sudermann, Daniel. Hohe geistreiche Lehren und Erklärungen: uber die fürnembsten Sprüche desz Hohen Lieds Salomonis von der Liebhabenden Seele das ist, Der Christlichen Kirchen und ihrem Gemahl Jesu Christo. Frankfurt: Eberhardt Kieser, gedruckt und verlegt durch Jacob von der Heyden, 1622; Wolfenbüttel Digital Library, 2001, http://diglib.hab.de/drucke/519-1-theol-2f-1/start.htm. Digital copy of 1622 book is also available on HaithiTrust from the Getty Research Institute.