Rodler’s Fine, Useful Booklet


Another treatise on perspective, and an older one than Pozzo’s so the drawings are somewhat cruder. Eyn schön nützlich büchlin und underweisung der kunst des Messens (A Fine, Useful Booklet and Instruction in the Art of Measurement) by Hieronymus Rodler was published in 1531, and features a number of full-page views where the perspective is accurate but also alarmingly severe in places. The emptiness and unusual appearance of the scenes has an unintentional charm, they remind me of the illustrations from The Dumas Club (1993) by Arturo Pérez-Reverte where the mysterious drawings—based on old alchemical illustrations—contain subtle variations. Rodler’s book made an appearance at Giornale Nuovo in 2005 so I’ll point you there for further discussion of its technical qualities. The book itself may be browsed here or downloaded here.





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