Fast Reviews of Books in Renaissance Intellectual History:
Contact: Dr. Heinrich C. Kuhn
Document created: 1999-03-30
Kemnitzer, Christa (adi.)
Band 9: Addenda und Konkordanzen
Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt [Frommann-Holzboog] 1998 (published 1999)
Series:Melanchthons Briefwechsel. - Kritische und kommentierte Gesamtausgabe / Regesten ; 9
Price: DEM 432 (= ca. EUR 220)
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This title was reviewed by: Heinrich C. Kuhn of "Institut für Geistesgeschichte und Philosophie der Renaissance (München)"
Item arrived at GGREN on:1999-03-15
Review was finished on:1999-03-30
- Hans Scheible himself called the "Regesta" (i.e. abstracts plus other information) to Melanchthon's Correspondence - the 9th volume of which is the item under review here - a preparatory work for his biography on M. (Scheible, Heinz: Melanchthon. - Eine Biographie, München [Beck] 1997, p.10). The Regesta to the M. correspondence offer, nevertheless, material that is not exhaustible by a biography of M. - not even by a biography by Scheible.
Volume 9 is the last of the text-part of the Regesta, and it is at the same time the first of a number of index volumes to the whole of the edition.
- After the prefatory matter pp. 19 - 71 offer 161 regesta for items for which no exact date could be established - ordered by name of correspondent where such name is known. As far as possible each entry gives sender, recipient, author, date and place of the letter, · references to other items in the context of the letter in question, · the main older edition or manuscripts where the letter in question can be read (or where there are testimonies for its existence in case of letters lost over the course of time), · in some cases variæ lectiones, · a short abstract, · plus a shorter or longer discussion of problems concerning the date (plus context), the correspondents, other named persons, relevant literature ... . These discussions are both useful and examples of impressive scholarship (they are sometimes of a quality that overwhelming, that one might fear, that they might serve even as a deterrent for anybody who might be tempted to try to embark on any such work of Regesta [e.g. correspondence by the authors with an archive in a attempt at establishing a more precise date for a letter of 16 lines in CR, for the abstract of which the authors needed 3 lines (p. 38, No. 9349)... ]). The abstracts are concise, legible, and (at least in all of the cases where I checked) absolutely correct. Together with the discussions they serve not only as a sort of index to the correspondence itself, but open windows and doors to M.'s universe.
pp. 73-183 contain more than 250 entries for datable letters the regesta for which were not yet incorporated in volumes 1 to 8 of the "Regesten". The order is by date; the structure of the entries is (mutatis mutandis) the same as for the first part of the Addenda. The sources used to establish these entries go up the "official" year of the publication of this volume: 1998 [!] and demonstrate the meticulous care of the authors; where applicable hints by correspondents of the authors' are acknowledged. At least part of these new entries is rather spectacular: e.g. Letters to M. by King Christian of Denmark (p. 131, No. 2903a) and by crownprince Erik of Sweden (p. 183, No. 9301a).
pp. 185 - 263 are addenda et corrigenda for regesta published in volumes 1 to 8. They correct typographic and other errors, and add locations for letters, indications of recently published literature, plus various other information (in some cases including new abstracts).
pp. 267 - 403 contain concordances between the "older" editions of M.'s correspondence and the numbers of the items in Scheible's edition: editions covered are: the Corpus reformatorum volumes, the Supplementa Melanchthoniana, Stupperich's Melanchthons Werke in Auswahl, Bindseil's additions to CR (" Philippi Melanchthonis Epistolae, iudicia, consilia, testimonia aliorumque ad eum epistolae quae in Corpore Reformatorum desiderantur ... ), Krause's Melanthoniana and the Weimar edition of Luther's works. The "direction" of the concordances is: "older" edition
---> Scheible's edition.
It is possible to work with these concordances (and in the cases where I checked there where no errors), but: for each of these editions in the concordance the column-title for the first volume of the edition is replaced by the column-title of the last volume of this edition. The publisher warns about this with a note glued to p. 266, and no great harm is done, but: a volume costing more than EUR 200 and especially a volume containing so fine scholarly work would have better been spared such maculæ: not to reset the faulty pages prior to publication in a case like this: this has been a definitely inappropriate decision.
- prospective audience.
This book will be bought by the libraries and (taking into account the price of the volumes: probably rather few) scholars who did decide to buy the other volumes of the "Regesten". Undergraduates will turn to other literature, but this book will be of great use for anybody doing research on Melanchthon and/or his correspondents.
- The "Regesten" are a very useful tool for anybody who wants to access M.'s correspondence - and via his correspondence his life. Volume 9 is a valuable addition to the series. As at least part of the users will be in fact reading in the "Regesten" it is a good thing to have them in the form of printed volumes. However: · as part of the entries contain pointers to other entries, · and as there are places, names, subjects and literature that are common to several entries, · and as sometimes one would like to able to go from the single regesta directly to the text of the letter it concerns without having to go to the shelves of ones library: an electronic version of the whole of the series (in addition to the printed volumes) would be very welcome and might (if reasonably priced) even find an audience greater than the one that will be reached by the printed volumes.
- This is an admirable volume of an admirable series. The missindication of columns in the concordance however is a flaw - I hope it is not followed by any future neglect of the work of the authors of this series on the side of the publisher. The day when the whole of the series is complete (hopefully together with an electronic version) will be a day of joy for all students of Melanchthon.
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Biblographic data formatted for downloading
Author1: Scheible, Heinz
Author2: Thüringer, Walter (Neben-Autor/in)
Author3: Kemnitzer, Christa (adi.)
main Title: Melanchtons Briefwechsel
subtitle: Band 9: Addenda und Konkordanzen
series: Melanchthons Briefwechsel. - Kritische und kommentierte Gesamtausgabe / Regesten ; 9
place of publ.: Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt
year: 1998 (published 1999)
no of pages etc.: 403 p.
aprox. price in EUR: 220
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