Early Incunabulist on the Thirty Years’ War

[Saubert, Johann - Sammelband]

190 × 150 mm (7.5 × 6 in.). Manuscript index on spine records nine works; portions of the first three citations partially washed out, and final citation partially covered by a later spine label. Manuscript index on rear end paper records 12 works, but there are in fact only 11 works in the present volume (a second sermon contained within one of the tracts is counted as number 10 in the second index; ergo, none were removed). Endbands in alternating pattern of white and red (now faded to pink) thread. All edges stained blue. Very Good. Bound in vellum over boards, somewhat soiled. The interior is clean and the leaves are sturdy; only the usual toning and some title pages trimmed a little close but with no loss to text. Minor worming to the front end papers, with a small hole reaching the first three pages of the first work in the volume. Toning and minor ink offsetting throughout, most noticeable in the seventh tract.

A sammelband with ten sermons and treatises by Johann Saubert (1592–1646) a popular preacher and strict Lutheran theologian who was also the city librarian of Nuremberg. The first nine pamphlets, all by Saubert, are arranged chronologically from 1631 to 1646 as enumerated on the index handwritten on the spine. The final two tracts were added later. One is by Saubert, dated 1634, and the other is by Christoph Welhammer (1585–1646), a fellow Lutheran theologian and preacher living in Nuremberg alongside Saubert. A second handwritten index on the rear endpaper records these additional works.

Born in Altdorf in 1592, Saubert’s early years were marked by the death of his father, his family’s ensuing poverty, and the sponsorship of Jakob Schopper, an orthodox Lutheran theologian who mentored Saubert and supported his education. Saubert was engaged with many Lutheran intellectuals and theological debates of his time, encountering figures like Johann Gerhard. Among his first works was a defense of the divine trinity against Valentinus Smalcius. Saubert took up a post as professor of theology at Altdorf in 1618 before moving to Nuremberg where he first was a deacon at St. Egidien, then a preacher at St. Lorenz (1628–1637), followed by another post at St. Sebaldus.

Saubert’s life was indelibly marked by the horrors of the Thirty Years’ War, whose ensuing battles, famines, and plague reduced the German population by an astonishing 36% (Wade, page 303). He survived the siege of Nuremberg (July–September 1632) in which Gustavus Adolphus’s encircled forces numbered around 45,000, the largest force he ever personally commanded. Throughout the war, Saubert maintained a semblance of order in Nuremberg by observing Sunday religious services and welcoming Protestant refugees adding to his popularity. The majority are sermons and tracts written during the Thirty Years’ War addressing religious as well as political issues that predominated in Germany. The majority of Saubert’s works released in his lifetime were published by the printer-bookseller Wolfgang Endter (aka Wolffgang Endters) (1593–1659). Endter inherited part of his business from his father, Georg Endter, in 1612. He was succeeded by his sons Johann and Wolfgang in 1651. Endter published many works by Lutherans during the War, which left its mark on his business. The Endter device depicts a skull being crowned with the motto, based on Revelations 2:10, Persevera usque ad finem et coronaberis” (preserve to the end and you shall be crowned). Despite the war Saubert was able to make significant intellectual contributions by authoring books, reforming the local education system, and editing the letters of Philip Melanchthon. Among Saubert’s scholarly achievements is his Historia bibliothecae Reip. Noribergensis (Nuremberg: Wolfgang Endter, 1643), a 241 page history of the Nuremberg Library of which a considerable portion is dedicated to a census of that library’s incunabula. He was the earliest bibliographer to identify books printed before 1501 as a separate class. In addition to being one of the first incunabulists, Saubert was a polemicist, which is on full display in this collection of his more fugitive tracts. The ephemeral writings show Saubert’s continuous engagement with the tumultuous world he lived in. They are preserved in a sturdy sammelband that comes from the monastic library of an order of Franciscan Recollects. There are early signs of readership such as underscoring and a title index. Several of these works are rare, not held outside of Germany, and have little to no sale history that we could trace.


Wade, Mara R. Picturing Peace: Johann Vogel’s Emblematical Meditations on Peace, Nürnberg 1649.” Rethinking Europe. Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill, 2019.

— 1 —

Saubertum, Johannem: Miracula Augustanae confessionis, Wunderwerck der Augspurgischen Confession/ Oder Eigentlicher/ auff Kupfer gefertigter Abriß deß gantzen Verlauffs/ Wie Anno 1530. vor Käyser Carl dem V. Hochlöblichster Ged. die Evangelische Chur-Fürsten und Stände/ ihre Confession und Glaubensbekandtniß abgelesen und übergeben/ Sampt Erzehlung unnd Erklärung aller vornemsten Umbständen und was für Wunderwerck Gottes dabey vorgeloffen unnd darauff erfolget/ Getrewlich zusammen gebracht und beschrieben Durch M. Johannem Saubertum, Predigern zu S. Laurentzen in Nürnberg.

❧ [Nuremburg]: In Verlegung Wolffgang Endters, mdcxxxi [1631]. In German. 4to. [8], 224, [8] pp., 1 unnumbered leaf of engraved plates. Added engraved title page depicting the presentation of the Augsburg Confession, with two angels holding open a book that on one side reads Biblia Sacra” and on the other reads Aug. Con.” Woodcut head and tail pieces. A few stray marks by an early hand scattered throughout the margins.

A history of the Diet of Augsburg intended to summarize, and thus make readily referenceable, this important (Saubert’s word is miraculous”) moment in Lutheran history in which the Protestant princes outlined their articles of faith. The author arranges the events into 47 parts and names the major individuals and their roles, leading up to the 25th of June on which day the Protestant princes read aloud the Augsburg Confession to Charles V. The Augsburg Confession was Dedicated to Johann Georg I (1585–1656), Elector of Saxony during the Thirty Years’ War. Saxony was a region of strategic importance during the Thirty Years’ War. Johann Georg was a Lutheran but ambivalent toward both Catholics and Protestants and allied with both at different points during the war. His concern was to hold on to, or if possible, expand, but under no circumstances give up, his territory. At press time, the Swedish King Gustavus Adolphus was attempting to create a military alliance with Johann Georg, which Saubert perhaps hoped to help secure by appealing to and reminding him of Lutheran doctrine. Johann Georg did ally with Adolphus but only after Imperial forces under the Count of Tilly invaded and pillaged parts of Saxony. Johann Georg would later negotiate favorable conditions for peace only to turn his army against his former Protestant allies.

With a magnificence engraved title page illustrating the miracle” of the Augsburg Confession; Protestant princes and clergy assemble on the ground while sword and shield wielding angels fly above.

Vd17 12:112257T

— 2 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Ponderatio Salutis, Das ist: Ein Geistliche Wage/ mit welcher/ zum glücklichen Anfang dieses 1635. Jahrs der Christen Seeligkeit unnd höchster Trost wider alle Anfechtung/ gleichsam abgewogen unnd erklärt worden/ in einer Predigt bey der Christlichen Pfarr-Gemein zu S. Laurentzen gehalten / Durch Johannes Saubertum. Predigern daselbsten.

❧ Nurnberg: In Verlegung Wolffgang Endters. Cum Privilegio, Anno mdcxxxv [1635]. In German. 4to. [24] leaves, 1 unnumbered folded leaf of plates. Engraved vignette on title page. A few passages are highlighted or marked with ink annotations in the margins. The folded plate has a tear extending 2.5 inches in from the gutter, but with no loss to the image.

A sermon delivered in commemoration of New Year’s Day 1635 by Saubert while he was a priest at St. Lorenz in Nuremberg. The themes of the sermon include order and law. Saubert likens sign to a counterweight that when placed in the law can triumph over damnation. The engraving provides a striking visual summary of Saubert’s sermon on law, faith, and the struggle against sin: a man runs from a forest towards a small garden (“the cycle of profession”) and reaches up for a muscular arm that extends downward from the clouds; with the other hand, the human holds on to one half of a scale that is loaded with symbols of religious devotion (“the weight of the wholesome Gospel”). On the other side of the scale are the symbols of sin and death, and a winged demon with a tail and horns is pulling down on it. A second hand reaches down from the clouds to tip the scales” in favor of the pious side.

Per Oclc, only two locations worldwide, and of these none are outside of Germany. Rare in the trade, with no copies for sale at the time of cataloguing and no auction history recorded by Rare Book Hub.

Vd17 75:647383E

— 3 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Psychopharmacum Pro Evangelicis & Pontificiis, Seelen Artzney/ für die Lutherische unnd Päbstische/ Das ist: Gründliche/ Schrifftmässige Erörterung Dieser Frage: Ob nunmehr/ wann wir die Papisten zu unserer Evangelischen Religion bewegen wöllen/ hierzu nöthiger sey/ Unser Disputiren, oder aber die Besserung unsers Lebens? Worbey viel wichtige unnd zu dieser Zeit hochnöthige/ sonderlichen frieden deftz lieben Teutschlandes/ etc. nicht undienliche Considerationes zu befinden/Auff begehrn vornemer Leut beschrieben und publicirt Durch Johannem Saubertum, Nürnbergischen Predigern in der Pfarr Kirchen zu St. Laurentzen.

❧ Nurnberg: In Verlegung Wolffgang Endters, Anno mdcxxxvi [1636]. In German. 4to. [8], 224 pp. Woodcut head piece and initial letter.

A lengthy treatise on medicine for the mind” that addresses the question of whether or not, and how best, to convert followers of the Roman Catholic church to the Lutheran church through theologically sound arguments. Saubert compares the work of conversion to treating an illness in society with the medicine of piety and true belief (see, for example, page 179). He begins by unapologetically referring to the devastation of the war as having brought down much godlessness and recovered a truer form of Christianity. The dedication is unusual in that it is addressed to all the preachers of the churches of Nuremberg, who are named and grouped by their affiliated church.

Vd17 12:114553N

— 4 —

Saubertum, Johannem :M Johannis Sauberti Einfältige/ doch Schrifftmässige Ab- und Anzugs-Predigten/ (von der Kirchen zu S. Laurentzen/ zu der Kirchen zu S. Sebald in Nürmberg) im Monat Julio und Augusto, Anno 1637. jedes mals bey Volckreicher Versamblung gehalten ; Sampt dem Register der bißhero gewesenen Prediger zu S. Sebald und S. Laurentzen.

❧ Gedruckt und verleft zu Nurmberg: durch Johann Friderich Sartorius. In German. 4to. [48] leaves. Some marginal annotations.

Five short sermons by Saubert, addressed to those of both high and low rank,” first delivered at the joint meetings of the churches of St. Lorenz and St. Sebald in Nuremberg, held during the months of July and August of 1637. The sermon topics include grace, inner strength, spiritual wealth, strangers, and salvation. The work ends with a chronology of church leaders in Nuremberg up to 1637. It begins with the Kirchenpfleger,” parish treasurers, starting with Jerome Baumgartner, who met and was influenced by Phillip Melanchthon and Martin Luther while a student at the University of Wittenberg. Next is a chronological list of preachers leading the churches of St. Lorenz and St. Sebald. Saubert’s entry notes he had led the church at St. Lorenz before being appointed to head St. Sebald in 1637. The final leaf contains laudatory poetry written for Saubert by Johann Weber (of the church of St. Egidien), Christoph Welhamer, and Johannes Dietelmair; there is also a clever anagram of Saubert’s name: Verba Iesu Sonans.”

Vd17 39:136250P

— 5 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Media pacis inter deum et homines: Fridens-Mittel Zwischen Gott und den Menschen : Nach dem geistreichen Raht deß H. Propheten Michae, Cap. 6. v. 6. seqq. An dem öffentlichen Buß- Fast- und Gebet-Tage; (so da war Aschermittwoch/ der 19 Febr. dieses lauffenden 1640 Jahrs) Erkläret und uff unser Vatterland Teutscher Nation und heutige Läufften gerichtet/ Durch Johannem Saubertum, Predigern in der Kirch zu S. Sebald in Nürnberg/ Sampt dem ernstlichen Obrigteitlichen Mandat/ so dazumal offentlich abgelesen worden.

❧ Nurnberg: In Verlegung Wolffgang Endters, Anno Christi mdcxxxx [1640]. In German. 4to. [2], 74 pp. Woodcut tail-piece on verso of final leaf. With early underscoring and marginal reader marks scattered throughout.

Saubert’s Ash Wednesday sermon for 1640. The start of lent in Nuremberg that year coincided with a significant event of the Thirty Years’ War. The preacher’s title (“The means of peace between God and men”) takes after this event, and he dedicates his sermon to the Electoral Convention that met in Nuremberg beginning in February 1640 to seek peace and reconciliation. The convention was called by Ferdinand III and while unsuccessful, it directly led to the Diet of Regensburg in September, the second of only two Imperial Diets held during the War. The Diet was a deliberative body, and the one held in 1640 was the penultimate one before the body became permanent in 1663. While many of Saubert’s sermons discuss the war, this one is of interest because it coincides with an effort at peace right in his town. A rare tract that serves as a Lutheran theological witness to a crucial political event in German history.

Oclc reports only three locations, none outside of Germany. Rare in the trade; no copies for sale at the time of cataloguing and no history of sale at auction on Rare Book Hub.

Vd17 75:647367X

— 6 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Spes pacis iterata, Das ist/ Friedens-Hoffnung/ auffs new geschöpfft Auß dem Heil-Bronnen Israelis Und In der Newen Jahrs-Predigt/ Anno 1641. der Christlichen Gemein zu S. Sebald/ kürtzlich und einfältig vorgetragen/ Durch Joh. Saubertum, Pastorem daselbst.

❧ Nurnberg: Gedruckt und verlegthen Wolffgang Endtern, Anno, VVann DIereIne AVssLeg Vng Der BIbLIenhIer aVssgefertIget VVarD [1641]. In German. 42, [2] pp. Printer’s device on title page. Date of publication is given as a chronogram. Woodcut head-piece and initials. Chronogrammatic verse on final unnumbered leaf.

A New Year’s sermon delivered at St. Sebald that takes up (again) the theme of the possibility of peace in Germany. The Thirty Years’ War devastated many parts of Germany, including Nuremberg. The resurfaced hope” Saubert refers to is the Diet of Regensburg, which grew out of the Electoral Convention of Nuremberg that began in February of 1640, on which Saubert also wrote and published a sermon. The macabre printer’s device is a nice summary of the war’s attrition. It is a woodcut with a Latin motto, Persevera usque ad finem et coronaberis” (“Persevere to the end and you will be crowned”), wrapped around a skull which is being crowned by an arm extending from the clouds.  The chronogram date in the imprint translates to When the pure interpretation of the Bible was made here.” The chronogrammatic poem on the penultimate unnumbered page clamors for peace and concludes with a prayer for the safety of Nuremberg.

No copies held outside of German libraries.

Vd17 23:625065A

— 7 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Die Frage/ Warumb Teutschland noch nicht gehetler worden? Und wie ihm dann endlich, zu helffen? Auß der Prophecey Jeremiae/ Cap. 8. vers. 22. Kurtz und einfältig, doch deutlich unnd Schrifftmässig erörtert und geprediget, am Newen Jahrstage Durch Joh. Saubertum, Predigern in der Pfarrkirch zu S. Sebald.

❧ Nurnberg: In Verlegung Wolffgang Endters, MDCXLII [1642]. In German. 4to. [2], 58 pp. Printer’s device on title page.

New Year’s sermon for 1642, preached at St. Sebaldus, on the possibility of peace and reconciliation in Germany after decades of plague, famine, and war. Saubert, who prides himself on using simple language, explores the possibilities for moving toward peace through a passage from Jeremiah, one of the books of the prophets. With a concluding poem in German by Johann Vogel; two in Latin by Johannes Matthaeus Meyfart, and a final poem by Johann Saubert titled Ad Germaniam vulneratam” (To Wounded Germany)—a strikingly somber tone compared to previous sermons that were optimistic about a potential peace.

Only one location in the US per Oclc.

Vd17 23:635397E

— 8 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Liber Providentiae Divinae Specialis, Das ist Denckzeddel Gottes/ Darinn die recht Gottesfürchtige auffgezeichnet zu finden/ Auß dem 3. Cap. Malachiae v. 16. In der Predigt Am Newen-Jahrstage Anno 1643. Kürtzlich und einfältig erklärt/ Durch Joh. Saubertum. Worbey auch der Denckzeddel vieler vornehmen umb deß Evangelii willen vertriebnen Herren und Frawen zu sehen.

❧ Gedruckt zu Nurnberg: bey Wolffgang Endter, 1643. In German. 4to. [62] leaves.

Saubert’s New Year’s sermon for 1643 on identifying true piety. Saubert specially mentions Protestants expelled from Catholic principalities for professing the Augsburg Confession, the Protestant articles of faith first codified at Augsburg and pronounced before Charles V on June 25, 1530. Throughout the Thirty Years’ War, Saubert had made a point to shelter such religious refugees who were forced to leave their homes due to their faith, an act which contributed to his popularity (among other Protestants, that is).

Oclc reports no locations in US or UK libraries.

Vd17 23:628933C

— 9 —

Saubertum, Johannem :Wolgemeint Bedencken. wie die Büchlein Christian Hohburgs/ sub titt: 1. Verwirrter Teutscher Krieg. 2. Teutsch-Evangelisches Judenthumb/ und dann die Schrifft Bernhardi Baumanns/ von dem Teutsch-Evangelischen ärgerlichen Christen­thumb [et]c. Recht zu erklären/ und ohne Anstoß zu lesen / In einem SendSchreiben an einen guten Freund/ und dann in einer gehaltenen WeihnachtPredigt eröffnet von Johanne Sauberto, Predigern deß Göttlichen Worts/ zu Nürnberg/ bey S. Sebald. [“Well meant to be careful. like the booklets of Christian Hohburg/ sub titt: 1. Confused German War. 2. German-Protestant Judaism/ and then the writing of Bernhardi Baumann/ from the German-Evangelical annoying Christianity etc. to declare right/ and read without offense / In a send letter to a good friend/ and then opened in a Christmas sermon held by Johanne Sauberto, preachers of the Divine Word/ in Nuremberg/ near S. Sebald.”]

❧ Nuremberg: Gedruckt bey Johann Friderich Sartorio, 1646. In German. 4to. [18] leaves. Woodcut tail-piece.

A two-part text. The first is the printed version of a letter Saubert sent to his brother-in-law, Johann Eggebrecht, with his commentaries on two tracts by the dissident Lutheran preacher Christian Hohburg. The first tract Saubert comments on is Heutiger, langwieriger, verwirreter Teutscher Krieg (1644). Hohburg condemns war and establishes his position as a pacifist Chrsitian mystic. In the second tract, Teutsch-evangelisches Judenthumb (1644), Hohburg identifies the plight of the 17th century German Protestant with that of the ancient Jewish people, arguing that both were the chosen of people of God who were then punished for their sins. The second part is a letter by Bernard Baumann to Johann Saubert regarding the birth of Christ, read by Saubert as a Christmas sermon before the church of St. Sebaldus. The work concludes with a long poem by Johann Vogel, a writer, educator, and rector of the church of St. Sebald in Nuremberg.

No copies held outside of Europe, per Oclc. No record of sale on Rare Book Hub, nor copies in the trade at the time of cataloguing.

Vd17 39:114423N

— 10 —

Saubertum, Johannem :De expugnatione Urbis Iebus / Von einnahm der Statt und Festung Jebus : auß dem andern Buch Samuelis am fünften Capitel, vers. 6. 7. 8. eine Predigt Uff die eröberung der Statt Regens­purg Gerichtet und bald nach eingelangter Zeitung, auß schuldiger Danckbarkeit gegen Gott, Zu Nürnberg in der kirch Zu St. Laurentzen, in Volckreicher Versamblung gehalte[n] durch Johannem Saubertum, Predigern daselbst. Zum ende sind etliche gedenckrourdige punkten beij gefugt Mitt Kon. Schwedischer Freijhert.

❧ Gedruckt und verlegt zu Nurnb[erg]: durch Wolff[gang] Ender, Anno MDCXXXIV [1634]. In German. 4to. [12], 50 [i.e. 51], [1] pp., 2 leaves of engraved plates. Title leaf and frontispiece are engraved.

A special sermon delivered by Saubert at the church of St. Lorenz to mark the occasion of the capture of Regensburg in November of 1633 by the armies of the Heilbronn league, a Swedish-German alliance formed in the wake of Gustavus Adolphus’s death. Saubert draws on the Biblical story of King David’s siege and conquest of Jerusalem from the Jebusites (2 Samuel Ch. 5, verses 6–8). An engraved frontispiece allegorizes this latest military victory for the Protestant forces. The combination of image and text is reminiscent of emblems, of which Saubert authored many. The title page is also fully engraved. The border depicts armor, rifles, swords, drums, cannons, and shot mingling with laurel branches and farming equipment. The Latin inscriptions make known a desire for peace. Atop it all is a coat of arms with two cherubs holding up a banner on which is written a triumphant declaration: non abs re floruit urbi” (“the city did not flourish without its defenders”). Concludes with three documents critical of the Society of Jesuits.

Saubert dedicates his sermon to all Protestants living in Regensburg who were expelled from their homes elsewhere. The dedication is dated November 13, 1633, but the 1634 date suggests its production took longer than expected, possibly due to the added time and expense of creating the ornate plates. The frontispiece provides a warning against arrogance which ended up as somewhat prophetic. The city was besieged by the Imperial army in May 1634 and re-captured in July.

Vd17 14:005441K

— 11 —

Welhammer, Christoph :Susanna Die Keusche: Das ist, Einfältige doch Schrifftmässige Erklärung der Schönen und Lehrreichen Historien von Susanna und Daniel: Einer Christlichen Gemein der deß H. Röm: Reichs Statt Nürnberg in Zwaintzig Predigten fürgetragen, Durch M. Christoph Welhammern Predigern zum H. Geist daselbst. [“Susanna The Chaste: This is, Simple yet Written Explanation of the Beautiful and Instructive Stories of Susanna and Daniel: A Christian community of the H. Rom: Reich instead of Nuremberg in twenty sermons for carried out by M. Christoph Welhammern preachers to the Holy Spirit there.”]

❧ Gedruckt und verlegt zu Nurnberg: beij Wolffgang Endterr, Anno Christi, 1639.  [4], 254, [10] pp., 1 unnumbered leaf of engraved plates. The lower margin of the title page has been so as to fold and carries an inscription signed M.C.W.” Wanting engraved frontispiece portrait and four of the preliminary leaves, including a portion of the dedication and two leaves of epigrammatic verse; catchword on )(3v covered with a slip of paper.

An omnibus of sermons on the apocryphal (per the Protestant tradition) Biblical story of Susanna found in the book of Daniel, delivered as twenty sermons between May 25, 1637 and January 25, 1638. Each sermon introduces a brief text which is then glossed and interpreted. Welhammer dispenses much advice on virtue, chastity, and obedience before as well as after marriage. Welhammer was a preacher in Nuremberg who wrote dedicatory poems found in the paratexts of Saubert’s sermons.

The engraved title page depicts two female figures, one representing truth and the other justice. Each have an engraved inset above and below that narrates the story of Susanna and Daniel, from the elders’ attempt to rape Susanna to Susanna’s trial for adultery (in the story, once the elders are rebuked by the chaste Susanna, the elders alledge she had been having sex with a younger man under a tree, an accusation for which Susanna was nearly executed) to the discovery of the elders’ deception to their execution (by stoning). The work is dedicated to women that are, in the author’s judgment, virtuous. Among the 26 named (all alongside their husbands) is Ursula Saubert, the widow of the bookseller Abraham Wagenmann who married Saubert after the death of his first wife (around 1632).

The inscription on the title page refers to Cornelius Marci, an evangelical Lutheran and pastor of Frauenkirche (Church of Our Lady) and St. Lorenz in Nuremberg. The note is signed M.C.W., likely made by Christoph Welhammer (1585–1646) himself. These were the initials Welhammer used to mark materials in his large personal library of controversial and theological literature, so this book was possibly owned by him at some point. His library was placed at the State Archive of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bavaria (Landeskirchliches Archiv der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Kirche in Bayern, Bibliothek).

Oclc locates no copies in US libraries. No copies in the trade and no sale history in Rare Book Hub.

Vd17 12:194182D


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Stock Code: 1454A17 Collections: , Catalogue:


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