Forces of Nature in Old Bibles

Cabinet Exhibition in the Historic Library

Floods, droughts, earthquakes, fires, swarms of grasshoppers - the Bible is full of stories of the outbreaks of nature that were perceived as God's punishment and judgment. The Flood literally stands for this. These natural catastrophes have inspired people to form an opinion of them. Even the earliest German Bible prints from the 15th century contain impressive illustrations, such as the larger-than-life grasshoppers in the Lower German Lübeck Bible from 1494. Starting from Bible quotations, the Cabinet Exhibition offers illustrations of the forces of nature in Bibles from five centuries, from the representation of the Flood to the sinking of Sodom and Gomorrah, the passage of the Israelites through the Red Sea to the disturbing images of the Apocalypse. Among them are outstanding works of book art, such as the illustrations from the Cranach workshop in Luther's September Testament and in the Full Bible of 1534.