Stronghold of the ancestors
The scans in this gallery come from the rich illustrated German book “Urväterhort. Die Heldensagen der Germanen” (Stronghold of the ancestors. The heroic legends of the Germanics), by Max Koch (illustrator) and Andreas Heusler (author), published by Martin Oldenburg, 1904. This book is free of copyright.
The stories of the book mainly deal with figures from the ‘Nibelungenlied’ (The Song of the Nibelungs) – the German term ‘lied’ is used here in its old meaning ‘epic’ and not as a chant. The likely older name for it is “Der Nibelunge Not” (The downfall of the Nibelungs).
The oldest written record from this epic comes from the 13th Century, the contents of the stories point to the 5th and 6th Century.
The artist made the pictures in Art Nouveau style.