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Variarum Scripturarum Exempla, Willem Silvius’ Writing-Book Discovered

In: Quaerendo
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  • 1 KB, National Library of the NetherlandsThe Haguethe Netherlands
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Abstract

This article attributes a manuscript in the collection of the KB, the National Library of the Netherlands, to Willem Silvius (c. 1520–1580), an Antwerp printer and a former writing master. The manuscript carries the title Variarum Scripturarum Exempla and contains 44 writing samples in eight different languages. It probably served as Silvius’ personal writing-book, which he used to attract customers when he was working as a writing master in Louvain. In 1562 he intended to publish the manuscript as the first printed exemplar-book in the Low Countries which contained writing models for different languages and settings. Although this publication never materialised, Silvius’ writing-book is a testimonial for the life and the achievements of one of most significant printers of sixteenth century Antwerp.

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