background image
56
T
he religious didactic book of the Friedberg preacher Franz Xaver Dorn, which circulated
in several editions and was also translated into German is an example of an emblematically
illustrated Lauritanian litany, and is heir to the Asma poetica, which was composed by the Marian-
ite congregation in Linz in 1636.
36
The structural principle of this type of work is based upon
the assignation of illustrations to the individual invocations of the litany. For Dorn's illustrations,
which are signed by Joseph and Johannes Klauber, a formal similarity to the emblem as well as
the adoption of individual emblematic motifs can be noticed. From this perspective, the invoca-
tion is to be understood as a motto, while a Bible quote is inserted as the epigramm.
37
The images
are completed by orationes, which continue with a prayer. Dorn's book, like other moral didactic
texts of this type, is intended to encourage the reader to meditate about the images, since the
complexly rendered illustrations cannot be accessed by a superficial summary. One of Dorn's
plates serves to illustrate the following question: How many emblems can a single image contain?
This example will help to clarify the problems of unraveling complex emblematic image struc-
tures.This example poses the question: where is the motto? And at the same time, Dorn opens
the possibility of contemplating complex textual formats beyond the three-part ideal emblem-
atic structure.
In plate 29 from Dorn (ill. 10) the mirror motif is used repeatedly to illustrate the invocation
"SPECULUM IUSTITIAE."
38
The visualization of the Marian honorific can be seen as the main motif: Mary appears with-
in a cartouche, which can be seen as the frame of a mirror, with the Christchild on her arm; the
second element of the title is brought into the picture by the scales of justice.The epigrammatic
line "Videmus nunc per speculum" (I Cor. 13, 12: For now we see through a glass...) evokes escha-
tological imagery, yet it can also be understood as a reference to the image in the lower part of
the plate.There a Devil, a human, and an angel see their image in a mirror which bears the broad-
ly inscribed motto "cuique suum."The "Marian mirror" in the upper part of the image is cir-
cumscribed with a further Bible verse, which is likewise typical of representations of Mary:
"Speculum sine macula Dei Maiestatis" (Prov. 7, 26: A mirror without flaw of the majesty of
God.). In the above left portion of the image, the sun along with the name of Christ,"Sol iusti-
36
See Cornelia Kemp,"Emblem,"
Marienlexikon, ed. Remigius Bäumer
and Leo Scheffczyk,Vol. 2 (St.
Ottilien: EOS, 1989) 331-334, esp.
333.
37
See Gregor Martin Lechner,
Emblemata. Zur barocken Symbol-
sprache. 26. Ausstellung des Graph-
ischen Kabinetts und der Stifts-
ausstellung, Jahresausstellung 1977
(Furth: Stift Göttweig, 1977) 33.
38
See footnote 11, SinnBilderWelten
(1999) no. 31.
Illustration 10: Franz Xaver Dorn, Litaniae Lauretanae,
Augsburg: J. B. Burckart, 1750, plate 29 (BSB: Chalc.
249).
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