Studies of the Warburg Institute

Erasmian Wit and Proverbial Wisdom: An Illustrated Moral Compendium for François I    2012. Medieval Arabic Thought: Essays in Honour of Fritz Zimmermann  2005. Azariah de’ Rossi’s Observations on the Syriac New Testament  2004. Al-Qabīṣī (Alcabitius): The Introduction to Astrology  2000. Avicenna’s De anima in the Latin West       

Publications in this series which are still available for purchase (click or hover over images for further information)
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Studies of the Warburg Institute was a forerunner series to Warburg Institute Studies and Texts. Initiated in 1936, soon after the arrival in London of the scholars of the Kulturwissenschaftliche Bibliothek Warburg in 1933, its name echoes the earlier Hamburg series Studien der Bibliothek Warburg (21 vols, 1922–32). The Warburg Institute published 43 volumes in its Studies series, the last in 1995. They focus on cultural history, art history and the history of ideas, and include single-authored monographs, critical editions of unpublished texts with English translations and notes or commentaries, and edited collections of essays on various themes. 

• Warburg Institute Library listing for this series, with further links to individual volumes 
• Studies volumes still available for purchase are listed below (click titles for further information)


43. Erasmian Wit and Proverbial Wisdom: An Illustrated Moral Compendium for François I. Facsimile of a dismembered manuscript with introduction and description. By Jean Michel Massing. 1995, £25.00. ISBN 9780 85481 096 3 

Erasmus of Rotterdam's "Adages" were first published in Venice in 1500. The Greek and Roman proverbs which he recorded and explained in this book met the Renaissance taste for ancient ethical precepts which could be used as a guide to living in the modern world. In many later editions, the maxims were vastly increased in number and Erasmus's commentaries often lengthened into moral essays. This manuscript provides an early example of the influence, direct and indirect, exerted by Erasmus. In this set of texts, word and image enhance each other in a way that prefigures the emblematic form which was to become so influential throughout Europe. The manuscript was intended for the character training of the future King Francois I. Its texts were chosen by the young prince's tutor, Francois Demoulins, who combined them with pictures some time between 1512 and Francois's accession to the throne in 1515. Demoulins drew heavily on the 1508 edition of Erasmus's "Adages", selecting those precepts which were most obviously applicable to court life and its pitfalls. He also included a number of sayings attributed to Pythagoras. For these Pythagorean precepts some explanation can be found, in Erasmus's commentaries on the "Adages". Massing's study places the manuscript in its historical, literary and artistic context, as well as emphasizing its significance for the development of the moral emblem. His commentary on each page further explores the sources and relationships of both texts and pictures.


Studies_Septième siècle cover42. Le Septième Siècle: Changements et Continuités / The Seventh Century: Change and Continuity. Jacques Fontaine and J. N. Hillgarth (eds). 1992, £35.00. 9780 85481 083 3 

This is a record of an Anglo-French colloquium held at the Warburg Institute in July 1988. The chief preoccupations were the interaction of the Christian religion with 7th-century society and the passage of Latin literature from the Mediterranean to the Celts and Anglo-Saxons.



Studies_Fossombroner Skizzenbuch cover41. Das Fossombroner Skizzenbuch. Ein Codex in der Biblioteca Civica Passionei zu Fossombrone mit Nachzeichnungen nach der Antike. By Arnold Nesselrath. WINNER OF THE 1995 PREMIO SALIMBENI. 1993, £55.00. ISBN 9780 85481 084 0 




40. The Optics of Ibn Al-Haytham. Books I-III: On Direct Vision. Translated with Introduction and Commentary by A. I. Sabra. 2 volumes, 1989, £50.00. ISBN 9780 85481 072 7 

The Kitāb al-manāẓir or Book of Optics of Ibn al-Haytham, composed in the second quarter of the 11th century AD, consists of seven books (or maqālas) which may be divided into two sections: the first is made up of books I-III and treats the rectilinear radiation of light and colour, and vision produced by rectilinear radiation; the second, consisting of books IV-VII, is a study of reflection and refraction of light and of vision produced by reflected and refracted rays. The present work comprises an English translation of and commentary on the first section, following Abdelhamid I. Sabra’s edition of the corresponding Arabic text, published in 1983. A Latin translation of Ibn al-Haytham’s Kitāb al-manāẓir, known as Perspectiva or De aspectibus, exerted profound influence on 13th-century European thinkers and circulated with other optical writings such as Ptolemy’s Optica, which became available in Latin around the same time. The present work includes a concordance of the Arabic and Latin texts as well as glossaries and a manuscript index.
• Volume I. English translation
• Volume II. Introduction, commentary, glossaries, concordance, indices 


38. Der Codex Wolfegg. Zeichnungen nach der Antike von Amico Aspertini. By Gunter Schweikhart. 1986, £10.00. ISBN 9780 85481 064 2 

Three extant volumes of drawings after the antique together with scattered leaves from this sketchbook by the Bolognese artist Amico Aspertini. One of the volumes dates from the beginning of the century, the other two from the 1530s and later. They make it possible to assess the antiquarian studies of a representative painter of the time in his progress from youth to maturity, while also throwing much light on the specific nature of Renaissance use of the legacy of Antiquity. In 1957 Phyllis Fray Bober’s Drawings after the Antique by Amico Aspertini made available the relevant drawings from the two sketchbooks of Aspertini’s maturity, now preserved in the British Museum. The present volume by Gunter Schweikhart of the Gesamthochschule, Kassel, is a companion to Professor Bober’s volume and completes the picture. Professor Schweikhart provides a full account of the young Appertini’s sketchbook, now in the Fürstliche Kunstsammlungen, Wolfgang (Codex Wolfegg). He deals with its history and its make-up, its relation to the tradition of sketchbooks after the antique, and the information it can be made to yield both concerning Appertini himself and concerning the artistic attitudes of his time. He provides a full catalogue of all the drawings in the Codex Wolfegg with notes on their derivation and their affiliations.  All the drawings are illustrated and there is ample comparative illustration. There are indices of artists, of drawings after ancient monuments, and of the monuments themselves by present location. The volume is published as a further instalment of the Warburg Institute’s programme of making available Renaissance sketchbooks after the antique. Publication has been supported by a grant from the Stiftung Volkswagenwerk.


36. The Hortus Deliciarum of Herrad of Hohenbourg (Landsberg). A Reconstruction by Rosalie Green, Michael Evans, Christine Bischoff, and Michael Curschmann. With contributions by T. Julian Brown and Kenneth Levy. Under the direction of Rosalie Green. 2 vols. 1979, £50.00. ISBN 9780 85481 0550

This is the first reconstruction of the Hortus deliciarum, the unique manuscript of which was destroyed in 1870. The text has been established from 19th-century transcripts (principally those made for Comte A. De Bastard), from printed sources, and from C. M. Engelhardt’s record of the German glosses as edited by E. Von Steinmeyer. The miniatures are reproduced from the best copies, some in versions previously unpublished. Variants are also included. All the painted copies are reproduced in colour. The reconstruction restores the original sequence of text and illustration and is intended to replace the obsolete publication of Alexandre Straub and Gustave Keller (1879-99). The edition was prepared under the supervision of Professor Rosalie Green, Director of the Index of Christian Art at Princeton University, who was responsible for the placing of illustrations and text, for the catalogue of the miniatures and for the comparative illustrations. Dr Michael Evans, of the Warburg Institute, and Mlle Christine Bischoff, established and ordered the text. Professor Michael Curschmann of Princeton University reconstructed the distribution of the German glosses. The commentary volume includes:

  • Description of the Manuscript and the Reconstruction, by Michael Evans
  • L’Histoire, par Christine Bischoff
  • The Miniatures, by Rosalie Green
  • Le Texte, par Christine Bischoff
  • The German Glosses, by Michael Curschmann
  • The Palaeography, by T. Julian Brown
  • The Musical Notation, by Kenneth Levy
  • Catalogue of Miniatures, by Rosalie Green


35. The Roman Sketchbook of Girolamo da Carpi. Norman W. Canedy. 1977, £20.00. ISBN 9780 85481 054 3

Girolamo da Carpi’s sketchbook, here assembled and catalogued by Professor Canedy, comprises the largest single graphic repertory extant of the antiquities known to a fifteenth- or sixteenth-century artist.  More than a thousand sketches survive in the album belonging to the Philip H. and A. S. Rosenbach Foundation in Philadelphia and the portfolio in the Biblioteca Reale, Turin. A few more sheets are preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings of the British Museum. All the drawings are reproduced, with some comparative material. Professor Canedy deals with the problems raised by the Sketchbook in a long Introduction. The corpus of Mannerist drawings after the antique and after other artists’ renderings of the antique stands alone in its extent and in its nature. There is no other collection by an Italian artist of stature where figure compositions – as distinct from architectural or ornamental designs – are so abundant. These drawings often supply our earliest evidence of the sixteenth century’s knowledge of individual works of classical art. Where there are invenzioni rather than ricardi, they are not original to Girolamo da Carpi, but copies of other artists’ compositions. Even where Cirolamo’s drawings are apparently made directly from the antique, there seems usually to have been an intermediate composition by another hand. Most frequently, the intermediary is a drawing of much wider importance for the study of the relation between antique and Mannerist art than at first appears. The publication of such a corpus also offers for the first time a secure basis for judging the attribution to Girolamo da Carpi of the seemingly endless succession of Cinquecento drawings of antique sculpture and grotteschi, which continue to appear in collections and on the art market. 


33. Benito Arias Montano (1527-1598). By B. Rekers. 1972, £5.00. ISBN 9780 85481 046 8

Benito Arias Montano (1527-1598), of the Order of Santiago, theologian, exegete, orientalist, humanist, representative of Spain at the Council of Trent and trusted political and religious adviser of Philip II, was perhaps the most famous Spanish scholar of his age. His chief monument is the great Antwerp Polyglot Bible in eight volumes, published by Plantin between 1569 and 1573, compiled under the supervision of Montano, with an apparatus largely written by him. This book is concerned with lesser-known but important aspects of Monano’s activity, his contacts with Netherlandish scholars of uncertain orthodoxy, his membership of the sect of Familists and his clandestine influence in the spread of Erasmianism in Spain. Based on a corpus of over six hundred surviving letters, it reviews Montano’s life from the point of view of his eirenic activities, and provides appendices with extracts from his correspondence, a list of documents cited and of his published and unpublished works. 


24. Giovanni Rucellai ed il suo Zibaldone. Part II: A Florentine Patrician and his Palace. By F. W. Kent, Alessandro Perosa, Brenda Preyer, Roberto Salvini and Piero Sanpaolesi, under the general direction of Nicolai Rubinstein. 1981, £25.00. ISBN 9780 95481 057 4

These studies make a companion to Alessandro Perosa’s 1960 edition of pagine scelte from the Zibaldone of Giovanni Rucellai (1403-1481). The Zibaldone was intended as a guide to Rucellai’s two sons in the conduct of their lives and is by turns family history, record of things done and seen, book of commercial management, chronicle of artistic patronage, Florentine history, and moral treatise. The present volume is centred on the character and achievement of Giovanni Rucellai and, in particular, on the palace which embodies the aspirations of this Florentine merchant patrician. Two contributions are in Italian, the remainder are in English. Professor Perosa, of the University of Florence, follows his edition with a comprehensive account of Giovanni in his intellectual and ethical milieu. Dr F. W. Kent, of Monash University, contributes a monograph on Rucellai’s career as merchant, citizen, builder and patron. Dr Brenda Preyer, of the University of Texas at Austin, drawing heavily, like Dr Kent, on new archival evidence which both have uncovered, adds an exhaustive examination of Giovanni’s acquisition of land for his building projects and of the stages in which his palace was constructed. She also re-examines the involvement of Leon Battista Alberti in Giovanni’s enterprises. Professor Piero Sanpaolesi, of the University of Florence, has provided a brief chapter on the architecture of the Rucellai Palace, and Professor Roberto Salvini, also of the University of Florence, an essay on the frescoes in the altana of the palace, which were rediscovered in 1950 and which are here reproduced in full for the first time. 


5. The Drawings of Nicolas Poussin: catalogue raisonné, parts IV and V

Part IV: Studies for the Long Gallery. The Decorative Drawings. The Illustrations to Leonardo's Treatise. The Landscape Drawings. Walter Friedlaender and Anthony Blunt (eds)  9780854810390. Studies of the Warburg Institute. 1963.  £5.00. 97808454810390

Part V: Drawings after the Antique. Miscellaneous Drawings. Addenda. Walter Friedlaender and Anthony Blunt (eds). 1974, £16.00. ISBN 9780 85481 048 2