The handover was arranged by Dr. Sonja Kerth, a German scholar at the University of Bremen. Terada, a medieval specialist, had acquired the document in an antiquarian bookshop and now, after decades of residence in Japan, has transferred it to Germany so that it can once again be found in its original cultural environment.
"This document is a valuable resource for several faculties," commented Dr. Maria Hermes-Wladarsch, head of the Historical Collections at the Bremen State and University Library. "I am very pleased that we have this rare document in Bremen."
The document dating back to 1374 originates from Fulda and was written by Konrad von Hanau, Prince Abbot of Fulda. It is most probably written in Early New High German and has a small format of 12.8 x 24.1 cm (height x width). Half of an originally oval or trapezoidal wax seal has been preserved.
Konrad von Hanau, Prince Abbot of Fulda, certifies the receipt of a sum of money in said document, which is to be interpreted in the context of his constant financial difficulties. In 1373, Konrad IV was elected Prince Abbot of Fulda, which was very costly. His subsequent period of rule was marked by various feuds and fights with knights of the surrounding area, which brought him into financial distress.
The document containing the signature was carefully unfolded in the SuUB Bremen's restoration workshop, dry-cleaned, and then transferred to a specially made acid-free protective container for storage.
The digitized document is now available in the SuUB Bremen’s digital collections for teaching and research at the University of Bremen, as well as worldwide: brema.suub.uni-bremen.de/urn/urn:nbn:de:gbv:46:1-162434.
Dr. Maria Hermes-Wladarsch
Head of Historical Collections
Bremen State and University Library
Phone: +49 421 218-59571
Email: hermesprotect me ?!suub.uni-bremenprotect me ?!.de