Hieroglyph, Emblem, and Renaissance Pictography


Author: Ludwig Volkmann
Editor / Translator: Robin Raybould
Robin Raybould’s Hieroglyph, Emblem and Renaissance Pictography is the first English translation of Ludwig Volkmann’s Bilderschriften der Renaissance, the classic text which promoted the symbol as a defining cultural and literary characteristic of early modern Europe. Volkmann enumerates and describes many of the works which illustrated the contemporary obsession with hieroglyph, emblem and device, particularly those from France and Germany, thus complementing Karl Giehlow’s earlier Hieroglyphenkunde on the subject. Volkmann’s book highlights both Renaissance theories of the image as language and the symbol as an aid to an understanding of the meaning of life and the nature of God.
Raybould’s translation has been described as elegant, admirable and impeccable and includes an introduction, extensive notes and several additional essays on topics relevant to the field.

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Robin Raybould (MA, LLM, Cambridge) is an independent scholar who specializes in Renaissance symbolic literature. He has recently published a translation of and commentary on Karl Giehlow’s Hieroglyphenkunde (Brill 2015) describing the reception of hieroglyphics in the Italian Renaissance as well as The Sibyl Series of the Fifteenth Century (Brill 2016) which describes the abrupt appearance of a new canon of the representation of the sibyls and their prophecies in the fifteenth century.
Those interested in the influence of the hieroglyph on the literature and culture of the Renaissance, in the fields of emblem and device, in the classical and medieval origins of these literary phenomena and in Renaissance theories of language and image.