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Emblematic Authorization – Lusus Emblematum: The Function Of Junius’ Emblem Commentary And Early Commentaries On Alciato’s Emblematum Libellus

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Chapter Summary

Junius was one of the most creative and influential sixteenth-century pioneers of Neo-Latin emblematics. An author who clarified his riddles ran the risk of eliminating the most attractive aspect of his literary work. Sambucus was convinced that the most important stage in the perception of emblems was the reader's intellectual labour of decoding the hidden meaning of both the images and the epigrams. The pictura had to be as clear and concisely designed as possible which meant that it should not contain superfluous or misleading elements and it had to be stable. He was able to exert an influence on the production of the illustrations in Plantin's edition and was well aware that when his emblem book was printed by another publisher, he would lose control over the images. He did his best to stabilize the illustrations in his emblematic commentary to safeguard the success of the game of emblems.

Keywords: Alciato; Emblematum Libellus; Junius; Lusus Emblematum; Neo-Latin; pictura; Plantin; Sambucus



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