Das Lemberger Evangeliar: Eine Wiederentdeckte Armenische Bilderhandschrift Des 12. Jahrhunderts

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English summary: The "Lemberger Evangeliar" (Lemberg Gospel), produced in 1198/1199, is a first-class monument of the early book illumination in the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia (present-day south-eastern Turkey). It has been known to researchers of the history of art since 1910, however, was presumed to be missing after the 2nd World War. In 1993 it was unexpectedly re-discovered in the cathedral archives of Gnesen (Poland). In the course of the evacuation of the Lemberg uniated Armenian community by the Soviet ...
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Overview

English summary: The "Lemberger Evangeliar" (Lemberg Gospel), produced in 1198/1199, is a first-class monument of the early book illumination in the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia (present-day south-eastern Turkey). It has been known to researchers of the history of art since 1910, however, was presumed to be missing after the 2nd World War. In 1993 it was unexpectedly re-discovered in the cathedral archives of Gnesen (Poland). In the course of the evacuation of the Lemberg uniated Armenian community by the Soviet Russians during 1945/1946 it reached Poland and has remained in the Gnesen cathedral archives since 1985. It came to Warsaw during the middle of 1997.The book illuminations of the manuscript are unusually extravagant and extensive. It begins with the letter of Eusebios from Caesara to Karpanios in which he describes the system of his Canon Tables on the books of the gospel. This is followed by Canon Tables I-VIII decorated with extremely sophisticated ornaments, then, at the beginning of each gospel, in total four full-page pictures of the evangelists as well as the artistically decorated beginning parts of the relevant gospels in ornamental letters opposite the pictures. The following texts of the gospels themselves are decorated with numerous ornamental and scenic border miniature figures. The manuscript was produced in the Cilician Taurus monasteries of Mlidsch and Skevra by the writer and book illuminator Gregor who is also known for his other illuminated manuscripts. He was commissioned by a priest Stephanos (Adam) who also obtained the extremely fine parchment from Cyprus. This edition contains all full-page miniatures of the gospels in facsimile as well as numerous coloured illustrations of his other scenic or ornamental border and text miniatures. Various contributions, including a brief description of the gospel, give a detailed explanation and documentation of the rank of the gospel and its miniatures in the history of art. In addition, the history of the manuscript itself, its restoration which took place in Mainz as well as the cultural-historical surroundings of the Armenian monasteries where it originated are described in this work. German description: Das Lemberger Evangeliar ging in den Kriegswirren des Jahres 1945, wie so viele andere Kunst- und Kirchenschatze, verloren und war seitdem verschollen. Durch einen Zufall kam die mittelalterliche Handschrift im Erzbischoflichen Archiv der Kathedrale in Gnesen, Polen, wieder ans Licht. Sie konnte von Gunter Prinzing, Professor fur Byzantinistik an der Universitat Mainz, aufgrund seiner Notizen, Fotos und dem Hinweis auf die Herkunft des Evangeliars aus Lemberg, als das verschollene "Lemberger Evangeliar" identifiziert werden. Die Handschrift hatte zuletzt dem armenisch-unierten Erzbistum der Armenier in Lemberg (heute L'viv, Ukraine) gehort, dessen Gemeinde von den Russen sofort nach Kriegsende nach Schlesien umgesiedelt worden war. Das Lemberger Evangeliar zahlt zu den fruhen erstrangigen Denkmalern der Buchmalerei Kilikiens (Kleinarmeniens), die sich in der Mitte des 12. Jahrhunderts zu entwickeln begann und bis ins 14. Jahrhundert gepflegt wurde. Es wurde in der kunsthistorischen Literatur erstmals 1910 erwahnt und wird anhand seiner Schreibernotizen in die Jahre 1197/98 datiert. Die buchmalerische Ausstattung der Handschrift ist ungewohnlich aufwendig und umfangreich. Sie beginnt mit dem Brief des Eusebios von Caesarea an Karpanios, in dem er das System seiner Kanontafeln zu den Evangelien erlautert. Hierauf folgen die mit hochst raffinierten Ornamenten versehenen Kanontafeln, dann, mit dem Beginn der jeweiligen Evangelien, die insgesamt vier ganzseitigen Evangelistenbilder sowie ihnen gegenuber die kunstvoll ornamentierten Anfangspartien des betreffenden Evangeliums in Zierschrift. Die folgenden Evangelientexte selbst sind mit zahlreichen ornamentalen bzw. szenischen Randminiaturen geschmuckt. Angefertigt wurde die Handschrift in den kilikischen Taurus-Klostern Mlidsch und Skevra von dem Schreiber und Buchmaler Gregor, von dem man noch andere illuminierte Handschriften kennt. Der Auftrag stammt von einem Priester Stephanos (Adam), der auch das sehr feine Pergament aus Zypern beschafft hat. Diese Ausgabe enthalt die schonsten Miniaturen des Evangeliars. Verschiedene Beitrage erlautern ausfuhrlich alle Fragen zur kunsthistorischen Einordnung und zum historischen Kontext dieser besonderen Handschrift.
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