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'Heidelberger Totentanz', was the first book in which the dance of death was portrayed. The author is unknown but it was printed by Heinrich Knoblochtzer in 1488 and contains a core series of 38 woodcuts in which the satricial emblem of death visits upon all manner of citizens. In most, the skeleton carries a musical instrument as a type of Pied Piper motif. The text, in a high German dialect, is addressed by death to its target.

DANCE OF DEATH, 1545. 'Death and the Physician.' Woodcut by Hans Lützelburger after Hans Holbein the Younger, from the series 'Dance of Death,' Lyons, 1545.

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