Charles IV, the Holy Roman Emperor, called Nuremberg “the most distinguished city in the empire” in 1366. He had chosen the free imperial city as his second place of residence after Prague, the capital of Bohemia. Charles IV succeeded in integrating the municipal elite into his plans and he made use of their economic ambitions. Members of large Nuremberg families owned subsidiary businesses in Prague or held sinecures or court offices.
Jiří Fajt ventures into this web of relationships in order to investigate the effects of imperial influence on the creation of art in Nuremberg. In Sebald Weinschröter, Charles IV employed a court painter, whose workshop also served the needs of those families who saw themselves as being close to the emperor, and who sought to express this attachment by means of artistic representation. The wide-ranging commercial contacts of the Nuremberger are indirectly reflected in the city’s authoritative art style, which reveals Italian and Franco-Flemish influences. Nuremberg under the reign of Charles IV will no longer be viewed as a Bohemian art province after reading this study.