Academic journal article Bunyan Studies

The Pilgrim's Progress Von John Bunyan

Academic journal article Bunyan Studies

The Pilgrim's Progress Von John Bunyan

Article excerpt

Claus Bernet, The Pilgrim's Progress von John Bunyan. Berlin: Edition Graugans, 2015. €12.99.

This short (forty-eight page) book forms the first of a two-part volume on The Pilgrim's Progress in a German series 'Masterpieces of the Heavenly Jerusalem' (Meisterwerke des Himmlischen Jerusalem). Claus Bernet, the editor of this series of illustrated books and author of the present work, is an expert on the subject of Jerusalem and how it has been represented in art. This specialisation may be responsible for both the strengths and some weaknesses of this interesting booklet.

After a brief introduction to the history of illustrations of Bunyan's allegory, the sequence of image descriptions starts with two illustrations from Samuel Purchas' Pilgrimage (1613), designed to show how, in the early seventeenth century, the idea that it was the destiny of the English to build the heavenly Jerusalem was becoming widespread. The remainder of the book is devoted to images appearing in editions of The Pilgrim's Progress, beginning with the gates of the Celestial City included at the top of the famous frontispiece first published in the third edition (1678 and its subsequent variants), and included in the frontispiece in the second part (1684 and following). …

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