Manuscript Hs. 498

Manuscript Hs. 498 with copies of epitaphs and gravestones from Freiburg Minster written by Joseph Felizian Geissinger is one of the gems and the most sought-after titles from the holdings in the University Library’s historic collections.

Valuable historical source

The work can certainly be interpreted as an early example of an illustrated inventory and documentation of the Minster’s architecture and furnishings. It is now a valuable source, both for many issues of cultural heritage preservation and the history of the city and University of Freiburg. In addition to a number of detailed studies of objects inside the Minster (for example, the statues of the patron saints of the city, the coats of arms of the guilds in the stained-glass windows, the altars and epitaphs in the choir chapels, including the university chapel), it is the depiction of Freiburg and Minster Square that make this manuscript popular among local researchers and church and art historians alike.

Full-page image of Minster Square in Freiburg im Breisgau with the Minster.
Hs. 498: Joseph Felizian GEISSINGER: copies of epitaphs and gravestones from Freiburg Minster, fol. 19r

Hs. 498, fol. 19r

In order to protect the work from the damaging impacts of constant use, a colour reversal film was initially created and made available to users. However, the frequency and intensity of the demand for this resource compelled the University Library to also digitise Geissinger’s manuscript and publish it online so that it can be conveniently presented to an even wider group of users. The digital content (available in colour) can be accessed online.


Die abendländischen neuzeitlichen Handschriften der Universitätsbibliothek Freiburg im Breisgau (The Western Modern Manuscripts of University Library Freiburg), written by Winfried HAGENMAIER. Freiburg im Breisgau: University Library Freiburg, 1996 (Die Handschriften der Universitätsbibliothek und anderer öffentlicher Sammlungen in Freiburg im Breisgau und Umgebung (The Manuscripts Held by the University Library and Other Public Collections in Freiburg im Breisgau and the Surrounding Area); 5), p. 89

University of Freiburg