Leonhard Wagner


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(b Schwabmünchen, nr Augsburg, 1453–4; d Augsburg, 1 Jan 1522). German calligrapher. From 1472 he was a Benedictine monk at SS Ulrich and Afra in Augsburg. He worked as a scribe on liturgical manuscripts from at least 1480. According to his own notes (Conscriptiones, 1494; Augsburg, Staats- & Stadtbib.) and the history of the monastery, he completed in all over 50 manuscripts, including commissions outside his Augsburg monastery, some being illuminated by important miniaturists. For Emperor Maximilian, a patron of his monastery, he produced the Vita Sancti Simperti (1492; Munich, Bayer. Staatsbib.), with some illustrations by Hans Holbein I. On journeys—to St Gall, among other places, where he could study medieval manuscripts—he taught calligraphy. His most famous calligraphic work is the Proba centum scripturarum (after 1509; Augsburg, Bischöf. Ordinariat), a pattern book of 100 medieval (lettera antica) and contemporary (lettera moderna) scripts, some invented by Leonhard himself. His portrait was drawn several times by Hans Holbein I (e.g. Berlin, Kupferstichkab.)


From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Renaissance Art.