Sunday, March 21, 2010
Armorial Ex Libris VI
One of the greatest ex libris engravers was the German-Danish artist Friedrich Britze (1870-1956). One of his plates of seal-type was engraved in copper in 1934 for count Reinhold Stenbock (1878-1946), one of the oldest Swedish noble families (ill. 11). During the German occupation of Denmark in the Second World War Friedrich Britze was thoughtless enough to make an ex libris for Werner Best, the German governor in Denmark, resulting on the loss of his position as an engraver to his Majesty the King.
Since heraldry is rich in color it is fairly obvious to have armorial ex libris printed in different colors as soon as it was technically possible. Five heraldic ex libris artists are presented here. Bruno B. Heim (1911-2003) was an archbishop in the Roman Catholic Church and a famous heraldist. The plate for His Excellency Hector Allard was devised by Heim in 1967 when Allard was Canadian Ambassador in Copenhagen where Heim was the Catholic nuncio (ill. 12). Of course the maple leaves refer to Canada; the bookplate is engraved in steel by the German master engraver Rudolf Niedballa (1914- ). The free shape of the lion is typical of Heim