Auction 109, Lot 750

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1400 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

2.7 x 4 inches
6.9 x 10.2 cm

A Breviary is liturgical book used for the celebration of the Divine Office. All members of monastic orders and the clergy are committed to the daily recitation prayers, devotions and reading contained in the breviary. During the Middle Ages, the leaves making up a Breviary 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 in a laborious manner with handmade paints and gold leaf, and masterful binders to complete the process.

Very decorative small leaf from a French breviary written on fine vellum. The text is in a single column in black ink with red rubrics. Two delicately painted illuminated initials adorn each side. The illuminations are in several colors on a background of polished gold leaf. In the margins on both sides are flowers and leaves on very thin tendrils in gold, blue and red.


Condition: A+

Estimate: $275 - $350

Sold for: $200

Closed on 12/1/2004