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Leather in Europe

Poster: rmhowe <magnusm@ncsu.edu>

If you can get your hands on it, you will find a great deal of excellent
high class leatherwork in this book:

GALL, GÜNTHER.: Leder im Europäischen; Kunsthandwerk. Braunschweig,
4to., orcl., xii, 406 pp., w. 16 pl. in color, 304 ills. in text. (Bibl. 
für Kunst u. Antiquitätenfreunde, Bd. XLIV).

I recently bought a copy from a Netherlands antique book dealer. 
It arrived today. It is flat out stunning in the variety of items.

There are fantastic things in it like crown cases, reliquary cases, 
leather caskets and trunks, cases for all sorts of things, many of them 
repouseed in very high relief. There are a number of leather covered 
shields in it. A few early ones, many from around 1600. On the subject 
of shoes, it has only a shoe foot reliquary, and I don't recall any 
saddles. The entries are from many different museums and countries. 

There are a number of differently styled leather bottels than we are 
used to seeing although there is a short section on English style jacks, 
bombards, and costrels. There are cases for silver and crystal cups, one 
particularly fine piece is a leather cover for a fully rigged silver 
ship centerpiece, masts, flags, rigging and all. 

There are some knife scabbards but no sword scabbards except for a 
case for a sword of state.

A few of the pieces are religious. Most are secular. The majority of
the book is simply masterpiece quality work.

The really sad thing is that more of the pictures weren't in color.
A number of the pieces such as the shields and caskets are illustrated
from more than one view, in the case of the caskets usually front and
back or front and top, but not ends. I was very impressed with the 
number of leather caskets in it. The majority of this book is later 
Middle Ages and Renaissance and the material seems to end about 1920, 
but there is very little modern work in it.

It cost but it was definitely worth it. Unfortunately I don't read 
German. I have no idea how to type real German text into Altavista. 
Rats. However I have these dictionaries...

Suitably smug and humbled variously,

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