The collection includes a large number of historical works, including works following medieval models that presented history in the form of a chronicle, and ones that reflected the new influence of classical models in their emphasis on the critical use of evidence and the development of a thesis that governed the selection and presentation of evidence. Particularly notable in this last group are the histories of Florence written by Leonardo Bruni and Poggio Bracciolini.
The largest number of works are chronicles, dominated by the popular work of Werner Rolevinck, the Fasciculus Temporum, for which the collection includes 11 editions printed between 1474 and the early 1490s. Also included are histories of France, Hungary, Saxony and the cities of Cologne and Venice, and the remarkable illustrated history of the world printed by Anton Koberger, Hartmann Schedel’s Liber Chronicarum, popularly known as the Nuremburg Chronicle.
A special form of historical work was the collective biography. The collection includes both a printed edition of Giovanni Boccaccio’s De Claris Mulieribus, and the updated version by Jacobo Filippo Foresti da Bergamo that included numerous biographical sketches and portraits of prominent 14th and 15th century Italian women.
Detail from Werner Rolevinck, Fasciculus Temporum. Cologne: Heinrich Quentell, 1479. Gift of Howard Lehman Goodhart.
Leonardo Bruni. Le historie Fiorentine. Florence: Bartholomeo Florentino, 1492. f B-1248
Poggio Bracciolini. Historia Fiorentina. Venice: Iacopo de Rossi, 1476. P-873.
Chroniques de France. Paris: Pasquier Bonhomme, 1476/77. f C-483.
Botho, Konrad. Chronecken der Sassen. Mainz : Peter Schoeffer, 1492.
Kölnische Chronik. Cologne, Johann Koelhoff the Younger, 1499.
Thuróczy, János, Chronica Hungariae. Augsburg : Erhard Ratdolt, 1488.
Sabellico, Decades rerum Venetraum. Venice : Andreas Torresanus, de Asula, 1487.
Schedel, Hartmann, Liber Chronicarum. Nuremberg : Anton Koberger, 12 July 1493. Also German edition.
Boccaccio, Giovanni, De claris mulieribus. [Louvain : Aegidius van der Heerstraten, 1487]
Foresti, Jacopo Filippo, da Bergamo. De claris mulieribus. Ferrara : Laurentius de Rubeis, de Valentia, 1497.