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Writing on Hands: Memory and Knowledge in Early Modern Europe

Sherman, Claire Richter; Copenhaver, Brian P.; Lukehart, Peter M.; Folger Shakespeare Library; Trout Gallery

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ISBN 10: 0295980729 / ISBN 13: 9780295980720
Published by Univ of Washington Pr; The Trout Gallery, Dickinson College, Seattle, Washington, U.S.A., 2001
Used Condition: Very Good Soft cover
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About this Item

Uncreased spine; slightly curling cover corners. A clean, unmarked copy. 275 pages. From Publishers Weekly: "Focusing on really fine art by such masters as Rembrandt, Albrecht D rer, Lucas van Leyden, Leonardo da Vinci and a host of anonymous but highly accomplished creators, this exhibition catalogue (for a show at Dickinson College's Trout Gallery in Pennsylvania and the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C.) reveals the Middle Ages' dependence on the human hand for everything from arithmetic to music, not to mention fortune-telling. Edited by art historian Sherman (Imagining Aristotle), the essays and catalogue entries combine erudition with accessibility. Sachiko Kusukawa, a research fellow in the history and philosophy of science at Trinity College, Cambridge, contributes a particularly lucid and intriguing chapter describing a hugely important treatise on "finger-reckoning" written by the English historian Bede (c. 673-735). Martin Kemp, a professor of art history at Oxford and recognized authority on the art of Leonardo da Vinci, also contributes a useful short chapter on anatomical art, while Brian P. Copenhaver, professor of history and philosophy at UCLA, provides a somewhat more abstruse essay on divination through use of the hands. Generally, though, academic-speak is kept to a friendly minimum, given the remote nature of the subject. For its excellent, hundred-plus reproductions of etchings and engravings and intriguing focus, this well-thought-out book will be attractive for all larger art history collections, while the cover will attract the digitally curious to higher-end display tables. " Size: XL. Bookseller Inventory # 094122

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Writing on Hands: Memory and Knowledge in ...

Publisher: Univ of Washington Pr; The Trout Gallery, Dickinson College, Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 2001

Binding: Oversize Paperback

Book Condition: Very Good

About this title


This volume is published in conjunction with an exhibition organized at the Trout Gallery, Dickinson College (Carlisle, Pennsylvania), September through November 2000, and traveling to the Folger Shakespeare Libary Washington, D.C., December through March 2001. The theme is the hand as it appears in miniatures, prints, and drawings, inscribed with or surrounded by lines, letters, words, symbols, and/or numbers. These representations all show the hand as it has functioned to serve understanding and memorization of religious concepts, musical verses, and predictions of the future, for example. Curator Sherman, who has published widely on medieval art and art historiography, is joined by several contributing art historians in providing extensively researched interpretive text for the 85 featured images. Distributed by the U. of Washington Press. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

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