Auction 104, Lot 673

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1450 (circa)

Publication: Book of Hours

Color:

Size:
2.6 x 3.7 inches
6.6 x 9.4 cm

Book of Hours were prayer books designed for the laity, but modeled on the Divine Office, a cycle of daily devotions, prayers and readings, performed by members of religious orders and the clergy. Its central text is the Hours of the Virgin. There are eight hours (times for prayer ): Matins, Lauds. Prime, Terce, Sext, None, Vespers and Compline. During the Middle Ages, the leaves making up a Book of Hours were written by hand on expensive parchment and beautifully illuminated with jewel-like pigments and gold leaf. These illuminated manuscripts combined the collaborative efforts of an array of highly skilled craftspeople; requiring the joint labors of the parchmenter, professional scribes to write the text in Gothic script, artists to illuminate the pages with decorations, and masterful binders to complete the process.

A tiny vellum leaf from a Book of Hours, probably in the neighborhood of Delft. The verso is decorated with one initial in gold leaf with delicate blue penwork in the margin. On the recto is a simple initial is in blue ink. The text is in brown/black ink with the rubrics in red. Visible on this leaf are the tiny pinpricks along the side that were used to draw the lines for the scribes to align the text.

References:

Condition: A+

Estimate: $140 - $180

Sold for: $100

Closed on 9/10/2003

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