Liber amicorum. Manuscript on paper in Latin, German and Italian. Siena, 1569-1570

Autore: WĂśRZBURG, Wolfgang Albrecht von (d. 1610)


Dati tipografici:


8vo (159x106 mm). 150 unnumbered leaves, of which 84 are blank. Remnants of 6 removed leaves. With overall 41 entries, 12 watercolor, 7 pencil and 1 pen drawings. Contemporary brown calf, panel with gilt corner- and center-pieces within multiple concentric gilt- and blind-ruled frames, spine with four raised bands and gilt fleuron repeated in every compartments, gilt edges (worn and rubbed, front joint partly opened, scratches and losses on both panels and spine). Provenance: On the front pastedown cut-out engraved bookplate by Johann Veit von Würzburg (1674-1756). In the winter semester of 1689 Johann Veit was enrolled at the Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg, then moved to Salzburg in 1696. In 1709 he was ordained deacon in Würzburg and priest in 1725. He was dean at St. Kilian's Cathedral in Würzburg and became cathedral schoolmaster in 1715, then cathedral dean. In 1729, he was elected provost at Neumünster Abbey. Johann Veit was also rector of the University of Würzburg from 1725 to 1729 and from 1736 to 1745. Condition: Well preserved and very genuine.

The liber amicorum of Wolfgang Albrecht von Würzburg. A native of Kleingeschwenda near Saalfeld, he was since 1592 provost in Bamberg, Würzburg and Comburg, and died on 24 March 1610 (cf. Grosses vollständiges Universal Lexicon aller Wissenschaften und Künste, Leipzig-Halle, 1749, vol. 59, col. 1308; and Regeste einer werthvollen, reichhaltigen Sammlung von Originalurkunden […], Nürnberg, 1850, p. 58). As the present album amicorum proves it, he studied in Siena in the years 1569-1570. The volume opens with a pretty costume picture of a “Gentildonna Senna” (‘Sienese noblewoman') and an entry of the owner (“In Catalogum amicorum”) facing his coat of arms. Further entries, partly with fully painted or simply sketched coats-of-arms, are by Johann Gottfried von Seckendorff, Bartholomäus von Romrod, Johann Gottfried von Berlichingen, Hannibal von Bocksberg, Hildebrand von Stain, Adrian von der Linde, Johann Georg von Fraunberg, Karl Ehinger, Virgilius Fröschlmoser, Jacob Mackl, Octavianus Schrenck, Nikolaus Hoier, and many others. Some of the contributors indicates their country of origin, namely Austria, Silesia, Pomerania, Swabia, etc. The only non-German entry is by the Bolognese student Galeazzo Balboni. All entries are dated 1569-1570 but one dated 1580, and all entries are signed from “Senis Hetruriae”. At the end is a partial register arranged in alphabetical order by first name probably written by the owner and, after that, a two-line saying (repeated twice), possibly as a counterpart to the beautiful Sienese woman depicted at the beginning, which goes: “Amor di putana é vin di Fiasco / la sera é bono, ela mattina eguasta” (‘Whore's love is like flask wine, good in the evening, rotten in the morning').


-colored portrait of a Sienese noblewoman (“Gentildonna Senna”) (l. 1r)

-note by the owner W.A. von Würzburg (l. 1v):

“In Catalogum amicorum

Hic liber ingenuis est consecratus amicis

A quibus est fucus spurcitiesque procul

Quod mihi coniunxit pietas costantia virtus

Integritas candor vita modestia fides

Morum ne me capiat oblivio quondam.

Si nos diversos hora locusque traherit.

Ut cuiusque mihi nomenque manumque referret

Haec est in talem charta plicata librum”

(‘To my friends' album

This book is devoted to the ingenious friends

From which all filth and dirtiness is removed

Connected to me by piety constancy virtue

Integrity candor modest life faith

So that I may never forget good customs

If time and place will make us different

Thus of whomever name and hand it reports to me

That leaf is folded to form this book')

-painted arms and signature of the owner W.A. von Würzburg with the motto “Assai ben balla a chi fortuna suona” (‘He very well dances to whom good fortune plays') (l. 2r)

-ll. 2v-11v blank

-entry by Johann Gottfried von Seckendorff (20 May 1570) with his coat-of arms sketched in pencil (l. 12r)

-l. 12v blank

-entry by ? von Sifenold (l. 13r)

-ll. 13v-14r blank

-entry by Bastian ? (1580) (l. 14v)

-entry by Bartholomäus von Romrod (1569) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 15r)

-l. 15v blank

-entry by Johann Gottfried von Berlichingen (1569) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 16r)

-l. 16v blank

-entry by Hannibal von Bocksberg (1569) (l. 17r)

-l. 17v blank

-entry by Johann Mertz (20 May 1570) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 18r)

-l. 18v blank

-entry by Erasmus von Blanckesehe (19 August 1569) (l. 19r)

-ll. 19v-20v blank

-entry by Hildebrand von Stain (20 May 1570) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 21r)

-l. 21v blank

-entries by Johann Georg von Fraunberg (27 August 1569) and Burchard von Fraunberg (20 May 1570) with their fully painted coat-of arms (l. 22r)

-l. 22v blank

-entry by Karl Ehinger (1570) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 23r)

-entry by Johann Christoph Ehnig (1570) with his fully painted coat-of arms on the following page (ll. 23v-24r)

-l. 24v blank

-entry by Virgilius Fröschlmoser (16 September 1569) (l. 25r)

-l. 25v blank

-entry by Johann Jacob Richtenfels (17 December 1569) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 26r)

-ll. 26v-27v blank

-entry by Christofferus Viepeck (12 October 1570) (l. 28r)

-l. 28v blank

-entry by Johann von Klünowitz (1569) (l. 29r)

-l. 29v blank

-entry by Adrian von der Linde (29 September 1569) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 30r)

-l. 30v blank

-entry by Michael Gietler (1569) (l. 31r)

-l. 31v blank

-entry by Jacob Mackl (1569) (l. 32r)

-l. 32v blank

-entry by Michael Kerl (December 1569) (l. 33r)

-l. 33v blank

-entry by Andreas von Kottwitz (1569) (l. 34r)

-l. 34v blank

-entry by Nikolaus von der Linde (30 December 1569) with his fully painted coat-of arms (l. 35r)

-l. 35v blank

-entry by Johann Eicheuser (30 December 1569) (l. 36r)

-l. 36v blank

-entry by Gaspar ? (30 December 1569) (l. 37r)

-l. 37v blank

-entry by Wolfgang Wilhelm Alb[…] (12 October 1569) (l. 38r)

-entry by Christopher Wilhelm von Fraunberg (12 October 1569) (l. 38v)

-entry by Gottfried von Pernegk (12 October 1569) (l. 39r)

-l. 39v blank

-entry by Heli Rhumpfmilletz (12 October 1569) (l. 40r)

-l. 40v blank

-entry by Hugo Kratz (19 December 1569) (l. 41r)

-l. 41v blank

-entry by Balthasar Fiegher (16 January 1570) (l. 42r)

-ll. 42v-43v blank

-entry by Hugo Kratz von Scharpfsenstein with his coat-of arms sketched in pencil (l. 44r)

-ll. 44v-46v blank

-entry by ? (19 January 1570) (l. 47r)

-ll. 47v-56v blank

-entry by Maximilian von Maming (19 May 1570) (l. 57r)

-l. 57v blank

-unidentified coat-of-arms sketched in pencil (l. 58r)

-l. 58v blank

-unidentified coat-of-arms sketched in pencil (l. 59r)

-l. 59v blank

-entry by Octavianus Schrenck (20 May 1570) (l. 60r)

-l. 60v blank

-pencil sketch of three standing men carrying swords (l. 61r)

-entry by Balthasar Thamüller (21 May 1570) (l. 61v)

-l. 62r blank

-entry by Galeazzo Balboni from Bologna (19 May 1570) (l. 62v)

-ll. 63r-65r blank

-entry by Wilhelm Schrenck (20 May 1570) (l. 65v)

-entry by Nikolaus Hoier (20 May 1570) (l. 66r)

-ll. 66v-83v blank

-entry by Daniel ? (1570) (l. 84r)

-l. 84v blank

-entry by Peter ? (1570) (l. 85r)

-ll. 85v-97v blank

-entry by Johann Georg Guntremmingig (16 September 1569) (l. 98r)

-ll. 98v-128v blank

-entry by Bernhard Dreytwein (19 May 1570) (l. 129r)

-l. 129v blank

-register of the names of the contributors arranged in alphabetical order by first name (unfinished) (ll. 130r-150v and pastedown)

During the 16th century the university of Siena, together with that of Padua, overtook the University of Bologna as the major destination in the Italian peninsula for the students coming from northern Europe and, in particular, from the German speaking regions. The Siena German Nation was extremely powerful and rich, and in certain particularly crowed periods, during the 16th century, one in five students that graduated from that university was German. Only recently, though, the numerous surviving documents of the Siena German Nation, which are still preserved in the Siena library and archives, have started being investigated by scholars. Around 1572/'74 the German Nation gave itself a more regulated organization, codified in statutes, and the place where all religious and secular events of the Nation took place was identified in the Chapel of Santa Barbara in the church of San Domenico, for whose maintenance a special fund was established to which all German students were required to contribute. By the end of the century the Nation was finally granted special privileges, which were kept together the other major “books” of the organization, like the statutes, the letters, the minutes, the account books, and the matriculation albums (cf. F. Weigle, ed., Die Matrikel der deutschen Nation in Siena (1573-1738), Tübingen, 1962; see also G. Minnucci, ed., I tedeschi nella storia dell'Università di Siena, Siena, 1988).

The present liber amicorum is particularly relevant for its early date, which is prior to the beginning of the first matriculation book (1573). It also precedes by roughly 15 years the Stammbuch (1584) of Hieronymus Albertus which is preserved in the Biblioteca Comunale degli Intronati (cf. G. Prunai, Lo Studio senese nel primo quarantennio del principato mediceo (1557-1597), in: “Bollettino senese di storia patria”, 66, 1959, pp. 144 and 147).