Reading is apparently the greatest proof of refinement when viewed within the context of the social climb of the visual artist. It is only as reader that the artist can participate in the exclusive culture of clerics, humanists, rulers and courtiers. How did it come about that such a figure was integrated into the general history-of-knowledge context of research on the early modern period – in order to outline what artists’ reading specifically entails. Based on the history of knowledge, the contributions to this volume will then correspondingly elucidate various aspects of how, in the early modern period, artists’ education, knowledge, reading and libraries were related to the ways in which they presented themselves.The volume endeavours at long last to go beyond merely publishing inventories by investigating the problem of artists’ libraries with a fundamentally stronger emphasis on a discourse-analytical and history-of-knowledge approach. Contributors include: Rainer Bayreuther, Maria Berbara, Cécile Beuzelin, Heiko Damm, Annette de Vries, Kelly Donahue-Wallace, Angela Dressen, Lex Hermans, Eckhard Leuschner, Alexander Marr, Martin Papenbrock, Tico Seifert, Eva Struhal, Michael Thimann, Huub van der Linden, Elsje van Kessel, Iris Wenderholm, and Claus Zittel.