Illustrations of Printed Editions of Josephus in the Sixteenth Century
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Already in the 1980s and 1990s, the two great researchers and bibliographers of Josephus, Louis H. Feldman and Heinz Schreckenberg acknowledged that the reappraisal of the iconographic tradition of the Jewish War and the Jewish Antiquities ‘is still largely overlooked and neglected.’1 This is the case both for study of the illustrations of the texts and for study of their influence on the visual arts. At this stage, the most advanced area of research concerns the miniatures in medieval manuscripts, primarily due to the monographs by Guy N. Deutsch and Ulrike Liebl.2 In contrast, the reception of the Jewish Antiquities in history painting has yielded no substantial results since those attained by Christian Tümpel in the 1980s in his work on the Dutch artists of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.3 More recently, Amy Golahny has devoted some pages in her study on Rembrandt’s Reading to the issue of Josephus’s importance for iconography.4
Least attention, up to now, has been paid to...