Tag: 15th century

Dragons and spheres and chimeras, Oh my!

Dragons and spheres and chimeras, Oh my!


Some lovely and surreal Renaissance images of marvels and unexplained phenomena, from Taschen’s The Book of Miracles.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_375a_1311061537_id_750233 Pew pew pew! Malevolent forces play Space Invaders with trembling Christian folk.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_371a_1311061537_id_750218 This happened to a friend of a friend. He went to the shops to get a paper and some milk, but he found the whole area blasted into desert, then he was gnawed by a dragon and he went to heaven. Ker-razy.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_343a_1311061536_id_750203 It’s raining icebergs and sort of lion mask things, Hallelujah.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_255a_1311061535_id_750173 Flying duck-eel-Muppet creatures wearing crowns, obviously. Eh, happens all time round our way.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_239a_1311061535_id_750158 Wow, such sky beams, very dazzle, many falling over towrs, much giant sea doge.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_185a_1311061535_id_750143 An alarmingly massive comet makes the towers and spires go all wonky again.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_181a_1311061534_id_750128 Nobody could deny her crimefighting prowess, but Donkey Lizard Bearded Arse Bird Leg Woman just wasn’t working as a superheroine name.

page_va_book_of_miracles_2400_047a_1311061534_id_750098 Don’t hate you those days where huge…

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Ars Moriendi

Ars Moriendi


Ars Moriendi(The Art of Dying) was a book that appeared in many editions across medieval Europe. This image is from a block-book edition, i.e. the words and pictures were each carved on the same wooden blocks instead of the text being set in futuristic movable type.  The demons appear to be tempting the man with visions of a new 1465 model executive horse, a nice hat, a big house with glass in the windows, and a wine cellar… though surely they’re too late if he’s on his death bed already? Step into my office, imps of Satan; your efficiency and the timeliness of your communications are severely lacking.

Seven hundred years on, this is looking a bit Muppety to me and reminding me of Labyrinth, especially the profoundly unscary demons. If David Bowie’s Goblin King get up of tights, codpiece and joke shop wig were shown here, that

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