Date of Award

January 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Hans P. Broedel


This thesis provides analysis, transcription, and translation of Paul Dolnstein's early sixteenth century annotated sketchbook. The study offers insight into one `type' of German Renaissance mercenary, the sedentary type. Known as Landsknechts, German Renaissance mercenaries were prized for their discipline on the field and for their commanders' ability to provide well equipped and well trained armies for the battlefields of Europe. As opposed to roving Landsknechts who followed the drums of war year in and year out, the sedentary Landsknecht retained his roots and returned to civilian work in his town of origin between campaigns. He might serve in only a few military campaigns, or he might serve in several. In all his warring, the sedentary Landsknecht maintained his ties to a particular locale and occupation, often that of an artisan.

This study argues that at least one such sedentary Landsknecht, Paul Dolnstein, saw his world through the lenses of both warrior and artisan. His experience as both master craftsman and mercenary shines through his sketches and accompanying commentary. In support of this argument, the thesis analyzes Paul Dolnstein's military sketchbook in the context of his civilian role as a highly regarded master craftsman, concluding that even as he is a warrior on the march, he sees military engagements through the eyes of master builder. Further, the very existence of this sketchbook demonstrates that the warrior in the artisan who has seen battle never ceases to exist. The soldier in this craftsman lived on in his memory, scars, and stories.