Wölfflin Wortschatz (terms)

Wölfflin Polyglot

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Grundbegriffe fundamental concepts conceptos fundamentals Основные понятия principes fondamentaux concetti fondamentali grundbegrepp temeljni pojmovi
Das Lineare linear lineal Линейность linéaire lineare lineär linearno
das Malerische painterly pictórico живописность pictural pittorico målerisk Slikovito
Fläche planar superficie плоскость plans superficie yta plošno
Tiefe recessional profundidad глубина profundeurs profondità djup dubinsko
offene Form open form forma abierta открытая форма forme ouverte forma aperta öppen form otvorena forma
geschlossene Form closed form forma cerrada замкнутая форма forme fermée forma chiusa sluten form zatvorena forma
Vielheit multiplicity pluralidad multiplicité molteplicità mångfald mnoštvo
Einheit  unity unidad unité unità enhet jedinstvo
Klarheit  clarity lo claro абсолютная ясность clarté chiarezza assoluta klarhet jasnost
Unklarheit  unclearness lo indistinto obscurité chiarezza relativa oklarhet nejasnost
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Stijilbegripen podstawowe pojęcia Múvészettörté neti alapfogalmak Temel Kavramları conceitos fundamentais Основни понятия Βασικές έννοιες principii fundamentale
lineair linearyzm linearitás çizgisel linear линеарно γραμμικό linear
picturaal malarskość festőiség gölgesel pictórico живописно ζωγραφικό» pictural
Vlakheid płaszczyzna síkszerű düzlem plano плоскост επιφάνεια reprezentare planǎ
Diepte głębia mélység derinlik profundidade дълбочина βάθος reprezentare în profunzime
open Vorm forma zamknięta nyitott forma açik form forma aberta отворена форма ανοικτή μορφή forma închisǎ
gesloten Vorm forma otwarta zárt forma kapali form forma fechada затворена форма κλειστή μορφή forma deschisǎ
Veelheid wielość sokszerűség çokluk pluralidade множественост πολλαπλότητα multiplicitate
Eenheid jedność egység birlik unidade единство ενότητα unitate
Helderheid jasność világosság belirlilik clareza яснота απόλυτη σαφήνεια claritate
Vaagheid niejasność homály belirsizlik obscuridade неяснота σχετική σαφήνεια neclaritate


  • Abendland/abendländisch (western): Literally occidental. Wölfflin means exclusively Western Europe when he uses the term.
  • Abwicklung: sequence or unfolding, a neutrally ordered sequence of events that does not indicate progress (as does Entwicklung, development)
  • Auffasssung: apprehension or perception, a way of seizing the world.
  • Dekorative: pure design, that is, that which does not have a mimetic referent.
  • Fernstil: Riegl used this term, and its related Fernblick, to indicate a work of art that requires a distant viewing point. Its opposite is Nahblick or proximate viewing.
  • Geist/geistig: of the spirit, not spiritual. Can include intellectual spirit in sense of spirit of rationalism of the Enlightenment
  • Germanisch: Germanic, a broader category than German, that often encompasses Dutch art and feeling for form.
  • Impressionism: Wölfflin refers variably to the historical movement of Impressionism and to transhistorical impressionisms.
  • lassik/klassisch: transhistorical values of equilibrium, clarity, etc. found at different moments but especially in the sixteenth century in Italy. Wölfflin insisted the Klassik was not synonymous with Renaissance art.
  • lebendig: lively, living, with vitality, a term used ubiquitously and with references to Lebensphilosophie.
  • Modern/moderne: can refer either to a more contemporary modern or to the early modern era (ca. 1400-1750)
  • nordisch: Northern. More geographic than qualitative (as germanisch can be)
  • Primitiven: artists of the Italian trecento and quattrocento, so called because they worked prior to “new” or “modern” era of art (marked by the Renaissance).
  • Primitiv: see p. for his explanation.
  • Regelmässigkeit: lawfulness or rule-bound.
  • Regie: stage direction or a large coordinated work.
  • Reiz: pleasure or stimulus, stimulation.
  • romanisch: Latinate, with reference usually to Spain and Italy
  • Sättung: Satiety. From Winckelmann, Goethe, Burckhardt. Has some erotic connotation.
  • Verunklärung: The making unclear or, the more purposeful and ethical obfuscation.
  • Vorstellung: either conceptualization in the mind (imagination) or representation, the form that conceptualization is given, visualization. Also, more commonplace meanings like the idea or conception.
  • Wahrnehmung: perception
  • Willkür: arbitrary, capricious, and these as characteristic of the exercise of power in tyrannies.
  • Zeitgeist: spirit of the times.