Catalog Archive
Auction 102, Lot 578

"[Book of Hours Leaf]", Hardouin, Gilles

Subject: Incunabula

Period: 1526 (published)

Publication: Horae V.V.M. Secundumusum Romanvorn


4.5 x 7 inches
11.4 x 17.8 cm

This leaf is from the brief transitional period when the new technology of printing with movable type was combined with the more labor intensive methods of hand painting. The earliest printers were trained in the manuscript tradition and incorporated the conventions of historiated initials and illustrations into their early work. At first they left those spaces blank for the illuminator to complete entirely by hand. Later they developed printing methods (using woodcuts or iron engravings) to decorate the leaves.

Old Testament scenes (iron engravings), including Moses receiving the Ten Commandments and the worshipping of the Golden Calf, surround the text. Both sides are printed in Gothic textura type with numerous illuminated capitals in red, blue and gold. Printed vellum Book of Hours leaves are very scarce, as they were only produced between 1496 and 1530.


Condition: A

Excellent quality with some scribe's green pigment staining the blank margin.

Estimate: $200 - $250

Sold for: $150

Closed on 3/5/2003