Why Put Them Together?

So what reasons are there for the separate booklets (?) to have been bound together? Here are some answers:
  • The texts in the booklets were quite new at the time.
  • They were written by local authors of high standing.
  • They were collector‘s items.
  • They represent the connection of two noble families (which can be concluded from the names in the manuscript).
mgq 719Grasmetze

Beginning of ‘Die Grasmetze’ by Hermann von Sachsenheim; Berlin, SBB-PK, Ms.Germ.Quart 719, fol. 196r.

It is obvious that the texts are interesting for different readers, catering to all tastes from the didactic to the erotic, and they also are a form of noble self-representation (like status symbols). Maybe not on a material level, since what you see here is the most elaborate page in a fairly average manuscript.

But the content – texts about love – seems to have worked as a means of representation: the texts show the marital and literary conjunction of two noble houses. They fit together well (as does the book). The only puzzling thing in this context are the prayers which seem quite out of place in this manuscript. But there might be one explanation for them which would also help us date the manuscript.

There is another manuscript from the same period that also shows how texts about love could function as a noble representation.

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