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Luther, Martin; George Lemberger, illus. Wider den Bischof zu Magdeburg Albrecht Cardinal. [colophon: Wittemberg: Hans Lufft], 1539. 4to (18.5 cm, 7.5").  ff. $1,250.00
First edition of Luther's severe attack on Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg (1490–1545), archbishop and elector of Mainz, regarding his part in the affair of Hans von Scenes (1499–1535), a former trusted friend of the cardinal. Scenes was accused of incorrectly condemning and quickly executing a person without properly judging his guilt or innocence. Luther, who had many past dealings with Albrecht (vide Contemporaries of Erasmus), took up the case in order to protest against the unfair treatment of simple citizens in relation to powerful nobles and clergy.
The text is, of course, in fraktur and the title-page has a very => superb single-element, unsigned, woodcut border by Georg Lemberger (ca.1490–1500 to ca.1540–45), noted for the woodcuts for the first part of the Luther Bible (1523) and for the title-page and some illustrations for the "Emser Testament" (1527).
Evidence of readership: Interesting marginalia on nine pages.
Benzing, Lutherbibliographie, 3318; VD16 L7402; Luther, Titeleinfassungen der Reformationszeit, 37. Contemporaries of Erasmus, I, pp. 185–87. Later light brown wrappers, front one tearing away at top of "joint"; title-page holed within border towards one side. A nice copy with Ink smearing broadly to C4 verso, this not impairing reading, and a narrow instance of inkstaining from another accident just to the top gutter edge of the last few leaves; otherwise, the ordinary spotting and soiling of use only. (40488) Please RESHELVE This.
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