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WOOD-BLOCKS OF ALBERT DURER.
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EDITED BY JOHN ALLEN, M.A.
MAJESTY'S INSPECTORS OF SCHOOLS.
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This book would probably not have been in the reader's hands, but for Mr. Henry Cole's beautiful edition (through the late Mr. Pickering) of the entire thirty-seven prints of the smaller Passion of Albert Durer. Thirty-five of the original wood-blocks as cut by that artist are now in the print-room of the British Museum. From these casts have been taken,and type metal copies; so that allowance being made for the dressing necessary on account of the worm-holes, the prints may be fairly said to represent the original wood-blocks. It seemed to me that, for general circulation, four of the prints issued by Albert Durer had better be omitted. I hope that an impression of the following thirty-two, at the cost of a shilling, may bring thousands under the influence of one of the greatest men of his time—the friend of Erasmus and of Melancthon-speaking to us across three centuries through the universal language of his art. It is possible that some who take up this volume may lay it down with a more vivid apprehension of that knowledge which, the Apostle teaches us (1 Cor. ii. 2), is the most necessary of all knowledge.