Ludwig Denig

Ludwig Denig (1755 - 1830) was an American folk artist.

A native of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, he became a aficionado of the Reformed Church, whose congregational scholastic he attended. He served in the American Revolution and worked as a shoemaker before, in 1787, moving to Chambersburg, Pennsylvania and taking up bill as an apothecary.

He died in Chambersburg. Denig is remembered for a 200-page illuminated manuscript he produced in 1784. The book, filled in the manner of spiritual texts and sermons and illustrated in watercolor, contains mainly scenes from the New Testament, including images from the passion of Jesus and the martyrdoms of the apostles. Also incorporated into its pages are pictures of symbolic flowers and other items, as with ease as twenty hymns. The pages show six-and-one-half by eight-and-one-half inches, and the collect is bound in leather. The folder contains a relatives register recording births, marriages, and deaths; his own death was noted in the ledger by one of his children.

Denig's illustrations depict their subjects dressed in the costume of contemporary Pennsylvania German people. They were painted as soon as the fraktur tradition in Pennsylvania was at its height, and accordingly they bear its imprint, as capably as the put on of Christian devotional prints and illustrated Bibles popular during the period. Theologically, the LP contains moralistic texts and illustrations of sacrifice, reflective of the Pietism later in vogue in the middle of some members of the Pennsylvania German Community.

Denig's LP was published in 1990 as The Picture-Bible of Ludwig Denig: A Pennsylvania German Emblem Book. At the mature it was owned by Esther Ipp Schwartz, who had offered it to folklorist Don Yoder for study.

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