Nikolaus Nievergalt

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Nikolaus Nievergalt (also: Niklas Nievergalt, Nifergalt, Nievergolt) (* around 1445 in Speyer ; † before February 18, 1511 in Worms ) was a painter and councilor who can be traced back to Worms between 1483 and 1511 , whose work is difficult to grasp.


Nikolaus Nievergalt came from a ramified family of goldsmiths and painters in Frankfurt am Main and Speyer. Hans Nievergalt founded a painting workshop in Speyer before 1400 and it was continued by Peter Nievergalt until at least 1449. Nikolaus Nievergalt was the son of Peters and emigrated to Worms, where he can be identified for the first time in 1483. Here he set up a painting workshop that received important orders. In 1495 Nievergalt lived in the house at Zum Schlüssel in Worms. He was related by marriage to the Heidelberg court painter Master Ludwig and the Heidelberg court singer, poet and doctor Johann Steinwert von Soest .

Nievergalt is described with great praise in various text sources from later times. In the 17th century, the Strasbourg merchant Balthasar Künast owned a portfolio with “torn and drawn things by famous painters” and also mentions “Nyfergald von Worms”. The Worms Chronicle by Friedrich Zorn, which was completed around 1570, names the “famous master Nicolaus Niwergolt” as the author of the wall paintings on the “coin” from 1493 .


  • In 1493 the city commissioned the Worms painter Nicolaus Nivergalt to paint several figures above an arcade on the facade of the Zur Münze building on the Worms market square. The house was acquired in 1491 as the new town hall of the municipality. According to a contemporary report, Nivergalt decorated the front of the shop above an arcade with "Imperial majesty, heroes and other worms and images". Town hall and paintings were destroyed in 1689.
  • In 1489 the mayor of Worms sent four letters of the coat of arms painted by him.
  • 1499 Order for an unspecified order for the Kirschgarten Abbey .
  • In 1501 an altar by Nievergalt in Speyer Cathedral is mentioned in the Speyer cathedral chapter minutes, which is now lost.
  • In 1505 a leaflet on the freak rabbit was created with a woodcut based on a design by Nievergalt, which was printed by Jakob Köbel in Oppenheim .

Possible further attributions

A possible work by Nievergalt: Adoration of the Magi on the Boßweiler Altar, around 1505

Current art-historical research identifies the remains of the surviving work of a painting workshop that must have been active in Worms between around 1490 and around 1510. It is the so-called Wolfskehler Altar from the time around 1490/1500, which is now in the Evangelical Church of Wolfskehlen , and the so-called Boßweiler Altar from the period after 1505, which is said to come from a Worms church. The complex of works is carried under the emergency name of the master of the Wolfskehler Altar. It should be considered whether works by Nikolaus Nievergalt have not been preserved because there are no other painters' workshops in Worms for this period.

The art historian Walter Hotz has tried in the 1950s, Nievergalt the house Buchmeister to identify. This thesis has been largely rejected and is hardly pursued any further.


  • Walter Hotz : The caretaker Nikolaus Nievergalt and his circle . In: Der Wormsgau 3, 1953, pp. 97–125.
  • Walter Hotz: Nikolaus Nievergalt von Worms in late Gothic painting. New contributions to the caretaker question . In: Der Wormsgau 5, 1956, pp. 306-316.
  • Michaela Schedl: Panel painting of the late Gothic on the southern Middle Rhine (= sources and treatises on the Middle Rhine church history 135). Mainz 2016, ISBN 978-3-929135-71-8 .
  • Michaela Schedl: Nievergalt, Nikolaus . In: General Artist Lexicon . The visual artists of all times and peoples (AKL). Volume 92, de Gruyter, Berlin 2016, ISBN 978-3-11-023258-5 , p. 379.


  1. ^ Walter Hotz: The caretaker Nikolaus Nievergalt and his circle . In: Der Wormsgau 3, 1953, p. 99; Hanns Hubach: Hans Bilger, sculptor from Worms. Studies on the art of reredos in Worms in the last quarter of the 15th century . In: Art in Hessen and am Mittelrhein 34, 1994, pp. 49–114, here note 8.
  2. Hotz 1953, p. 99.
  3. Gerold Bönnen: The Worms town hall and the town hall district from the Middle Ages until today . Published by the Worms City Archives on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the new City Hall. Worms 2008.
  4. August Weckerling: A leaflet from 1505 with a drawing by the Worms painter Nikolaus Nievergalt . In: Vom Rhein 1, 1902, pp. 36–38. A colored copy in the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek in Munich Signed Einbl. I, 40.
  5. ^ Michaela Schedl: Panel painting of the late Gothic period on the southern Middle Rhine (= sources and treatises on the Middle Rhine church history 135). Mainz 2016, here pp. 69–79.