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tionis,' and 'Das Buch der Figuren,' taken from the Latin. Some of his poems, of a purely German character, possess great merit.
LIMBURGER (CHRONICLE). The first authorship of this Chronicle, written between 1336-1398, has been attributed to one Tielmann Adam Emmel, of Strasburg, to have been copied by Johann Gensbein, about the year 1473, and continued by George and Adam Emmel up to 1561. The first edition, a modernised version of the original document, which appeared under the title 'Fasti Limpurgenses' (1617) has no claims to any literary merit, but is highly interesting, inasmuch as it gives us a graphic description of the manners of the people of the 14th century. Here is a description of the ladies' dresses of that period :
Die Frauwen gingen gekleidet zu Hoff vnd Dentzen mit par kleidern vnd den vnderrock mit engen armen, das oberste kleid hiesse ein Sorkett vnd war bei den seiten neben vnden ouf geschlissen vnd gefüdert in winter mit bund oder im sommer mit zendel, das da zimlich eim jglichen weib was, ect., etc. From which we infer that these Alsatian beauties wore petticoats, narrow sleeves, the upper dress opening on both sides, and nicely lined or wadded, according to the season.
LUNETENS MANTEL may be considered the counterpart of the Crown' legend. When this pièce de conviction is tried on by the court ladies, all turn out to be more or less tainted, with the exception of the Queen of Spanigan,' whose conduct is the more creditable, as she had a very old husband. When the wife of the court fool wishes to try the cloak, the facetious husband objects, and remarks, that whatever the result, 'she would always be guiltless in his eyes, as long as she did not try the cloak. The old King of Spanigan, a sensible man, profiting by this remark, is on the point of dispensing his wife from giving this proof of her fidelity, when she, conscious of her innocence, puts on the cloak, and, behold, it fitted her admirably.
MANDEVILLE'S REISE. John Mandeville, the physician and English traveller, born in St. Albans, died at Liège, in the year 1372. The description of his journey to the East (1322—1355), so truthful, evincing such a spirit of observation, and interwoven with so many interesting legends of the past, could not fail to attract the attention of foreign writers; and hence the numerous translations of his remarkable work. Michaelvelser and Otto von Diemeringen translated the work into German, the former in 1481, the latter in 1483. We possess also a version of it in LowGerman, dating from 1430. According to Görres, it was Otto von
, Diemeringen who added many legends to the original work.
MARIENKLAGE. We possess two versions of it; one contained
in the 'Planctas Mariæ Virginis,' and the other in the 'Ludus de nocte Paschal,' belonging to the 13th and 14th centuries. The poem contains passages of great beauty, especially those in which the Virgin, when carried away from the cross of her Son, in the intensity of her grief, exclaiming : • Cruces ast,nu naiga dich,
doran tust du mir vil wol zu dir solt du zihen mich,
wan ich armen, jamers vol zu meines kindes seiten;
mach niht lenger peiten (leben).' MAXIMILIAN I. (THEUERDANK). Unsuccessful in his political and mental aspirations, this emperor, without firmness of character, possessed, in a high degree, the qualities of the heart.
He wrote the poem Theuerdank,' and collected the material · for 'Der Weisskunig. The former appeared in 1517, at Nurem
berg, and relates the adventures of Maximilian, who finally obtains the object of his aspirations, ' Princess Ehrenreich (Maria of Burgundy:') The poem “Theuerdank' was revised and corrected by Maximilian's secretary, Treitzsauerwein, and by Melchior Pfinzing, of Nuremberg.
The Weisskunig,' deficient in literary merit, revised by Treitzsauerwein, and only historically important, is divided into three parts, the first contains the marriage and coronation of Frederick III.; the second describes the early youth of Maximilian, up to his marriage; and the third his wars and adventures.
MEGENBERG (KONRAD VON), supposed to have been born in the year 1309, is the author of the Book of Nature,' divided into twelve parts, and treating, as he says himself, of strange wells, animals, and men.' He speaks also of the medical qualities of certain plants and stones, and intersperses the subject with many remarks, the mystic nature of which subsequent writers, no doubt, availed themselves of in treating supernatural subjects.
Here is a somewhat primitive account of the cock, perhaps interesting to the enquirer of natural history.
• Gallus means a cock. The cock, when he wants to sing or crow, is in the habit of flapping with his wings. He also sings louder and stronger at night, because he is then more cheerful; and at noon his voice grows softer. Some are also of opinion that the cock, singing at night, drives away evil thoughts, and comforts the sick. There is also many a herb suiting the cock that would kill any other animal. He is also in the habit, when he wants to sleep, to fly up, and rest on a tree. The lion is afraid of the
, white cock. Aristotle says that the cock crows after combat; not so the hen. When the cock and quail behold their images in
a looking-glass, their strength leaves them. He calls his wife and little ones to dinner after having found some grain. Occasionally, it happens that the cock, when getting old, lays an egg, which, hatched by the toad, produces a snake, or frog, called in Latin pasilicus. After the death of the hens, the cock frets, gets leaner and leaner, and crows no more.'
MONTFORT (HUGO von), 1357—1423. His lyric poems possess the character of the "Minnesong,' and that of the “Volkslied.' His didactic poems have less merit.
MÜGLIN (HEINRICH), said to be one of the inventors of the Meistergesang. As lyric poet, he reminds us of the style of Frauenlob and Regenbogen, conveying his lessons of wisdom and maxims in short rhymes and verses. He wrote also a didactic poem, ‘Das Buch der Maide,' and dedicated it to Emperor Charles IV., in token of gratitude for benefits received from the latter.
MURNER (THOMAS), 1475—1536. Born at Strasburg, belonged to the Order of the Franciscans, and was one of Luther's most violent opponents. His celebrated work, ‘Die Narrenbeschwörung, with which his name as a writer is chiefly associated, appeared in the year 1512, at Strasburg. Unlike Brandt, Murner expresses,
, in this poem, the prevailing vices, with a virulence and acerbity which we do not find in the Narrenschiff.' He spares neither princes, nobles, bishops, lawyers, nor physicians, but exposes their vices, and the degeneracy of his age, unsparingly and somewhat rudely.
His other productions, Die Schelmenzunft,' • Die geistliche Badenfahrt,' and the Geuchmatt,' have the same tendency, but are rather inferior in spirit and general merit. In the poem “Von dem grossen Lutherischen Narren, wie ihn Dr. Murner beschworem hat,' considered to be his best, he attacks the great Reformers and the Reformation in unmeasured terms.
MYLLIUS (Martin), also called Miller, from Ulm, resided in Vienna about 1515, died in the year 1521. Wrote a number of sacred poems, under the title of 'Passio Christo,' in which he imitates the ancient form of the stanza. Nicolaus, of Strasburg, a Dominican, preached in Friburg and
a Adelhausen, and wrote a Latin work full of erudition on Antichrist, and the coming of the Saviour, dedicated to Pope John XXII., and also a number of sermons, the principal merit of which consists in their being short. NÖRDLINGEN (HEINRICH von), born in the year 1331, the con
, temporary of Tauler, and also mentally allied to him. He seems to have led a wandering life, and to have kept up intimate relations
with women, and, above all, with a nun of the name of Margaret Ebnerin,'of the convent of Maria-Medingen, near Augsburg. We give here an extract of a letter addressed to the fair nun by the wandering priest. 'I inform you, my dear wife, that I am well and happy, and that I, after Easter, went from Kosteny to my Lady the Queen of Hungary, in the Convent of Königsfeld, but did not work there. Then I went to Basil to my, and also thy, dear Cousin Tauler, who assisted me as much as he could. There I remained a long time, but did not find one according to my wish ; afterwards, as God willed it, I got shelter in the hospital at Basil, where I was allowed to preach often twice a day.' Then he proceeds to enumerate all the blessings he received at that town.
Passau (OTTO VON). Contemporary of Tauler, and readingmaster at the Convent of the Franciscans, at Basil, wrote in the year 1386, according to others, in 1418, his “Book of the four and twenty old men,' or 'The golden throne of the loving souls,' based on a passage in the 'Revelation of St. John,' in which it is said that the apostle saw God sitting on his throne, surrounded by twenty-four old men, dressed in white. The men recite here, in as many chapters, the principal doctrines of the Christian faith, according to the interpretations of the old fathers of the Church, and the earlier theologians and classical writers, the book, in fact, being a selection of proverbs and sentences from other works, divided into twenty-four chapters.
PRIAMELN. In this didactic form of poetry, resembling the maxim' or 'proverb,' the moral is not necessarily expressed, but implied, by the preceding remarks. Sew Korn Egidii, habern gersten Benedicti, Sow corn Egidii, oats and barley Benedictin und flachs Urbani, ruben wicken Khiliani, flax Urban , turnips Kiliani, erwis Gregori, linsi Jacobi minoris, peas St. Gregori, lentils Jacobi Minoris. Sew zwyben Ambrosii, all felt grunen Sow onions Am sii, all sorts of greens Kiburtii,
Kiburti, Sayw kralt Urbani grab ruben Sancti Galli, Sow herbs Urbani, dig turnips Sancti Galli, mach wurst Martini, kauf kesz viuncula make sausages Martini, and buy cheese, Petri.
Vinculi Petri. drag Sperwer Sixti, vach wachtel Barthole- carry home Sixti, catch quails Bartholomei.
mey. Kauf holtz Johannis, wilt tu es haben Buy wood St. Johannis, if you want it for Michaelis,
Michaelis, Klaib stuben Sixti, wilt tu warm han natalis close up well your rooms Sixti, if you want Christi.
warmth for Christmas-day: Iss gans Martini, drinck wein per circulum Eat goose St. Martini, drink wine all the anni.
Rön (KASPAR VON DER), born at Münnerstadt, Franconia; lived towards the middle of the 15th century; collected and condensed the old legends of our heroic era, and published them under the name of "Das neue Heldenbuch. They are very inferior to the ancient monuments of our literature, very confused, and
contain the legends of Ortnit,' Wolfdietrich,' Etzel's court, · Ecken Ausfahrt,” “Sigenot,' • Dietrich,' 'Dwarf Laurin,' Rosengarten,' and the · Hildbrandlied.'
ROSENBLÜT (Hans), also called 'der Schnepperer,' or talker, resided mostly at Nuremberg, where he wrote his poems so remarkable for spirit and jocularity, between the years 1431–1460. He greatly appreciated his native Rhenish wine, and shows it in his drinking songs:
"WEINSEG EN AND WEINGRÜSZE.'
denn du erfröuwest jung und alt. Hans Rosenblüt has written an extraordinary number of comical tales, and carnival plays. Among them we note, Das Spiel vom Münch Berchtolt,' von einem Edelmann un einer Frau, von einem Arzt genennt Meister Uncian, von den zwelf Pfaffenknechten, &c., &c., &c. He lets his imagination run riot in Spil, wie Frauen ein Kleinot aufwurfen. Some ladies having offered a rich reward to the man who should prove to be fondest of his wife, and be able to describe his attachment in the most glowing terms, ten gentlemen come forward to gain the prize. The first says: “ All the mountains together are only a molehill, compared to my love'; the second, 'I value my wife more than all the gold, silver, and precious stones under heaven'; the third, 'The sweet smile of my wife is more cheering to me than the song of millions of birds, singing at the same time in a wood, a thousand miles in length'; the fourth, “My love is so ardent, that if a mountain of steel were thrown into the depth of my loving heart, the steel would melt nine times quicker than the snow would on a baking oven.' Another
says, If the ocean were a sea of ink, it would be impossible to describe, in writing, the intensity of my love'; another ironically remarks, that he preferred his wife to having his beard pulled out, or to receiving a sound thrashing.' The last having said that if his wife was a hundred years old, blacker than a negress, ugly like a monkey, she would still appear more beautiful to him than Queen Esther, the fair distributors of the prize, in consideration of this excess of self-abnegation, awarded it to this pattern of a husband.
In many of his comical plays, Rosenblüt manages to expose the vices of his age, and, above all, those of the clergy, and always defends the right of the weak against the strong.