BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16
BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16 BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16 BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16 BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16 BIBLE. Single leaf from the Old Testament. Ezekiel 43:27 to 45:16
£100,000.00

[Mainz] Printed by Johann Gutenberg. 1455.

Single leaf (361 x 252 mm). Housed in the original portfolio, royal folio (408 x 285 mm), early 20th-century black morocco by Stikeman and Co, spine and front cover lettered in gilt, covers panelled in blind, grey endpapers.

A single paper leaf from the Gutenberg bible, the first complete book printed with movable type.

The "Noble Fragment" originates from an imperfect copy of the Gutenberg Bible, lacking 50 leaves, which was divided by Gabriel Wells, a New York book dealer, and dispersed as single leaves or larger fragments, and inserted into a morocco portfolio by leading American bookbinders Stikeman and Co.

The text comprises the concluding lines of Ezekiel 43, all of 44, and the majority of 45, the passages detailing God's prophesied return to the Temple of Jerusalem, and setting down the rules for worship there.

Provenance: Maria Elisabeth Augusta von Sulzbach (1721-1794), wife of Carl Theodore, Electoral Prince of the Palatinate, subsequently Electoral Prince of Bavaria; Mannheim, Hofbibliothek; Munich, Royal Library (their duplicate sale, 1832, sold for 350 guilders); Robert Curzon, Baron Zouche (1810-1873, and by descent until sold); Sotheby's 9 November 1920, lot 70, to Joseph Sabin; sold by him to Gabriel Wells, who broke up the copy, dispersing it in single leaves and in larger fragments.