Auction 110, Lot 708

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1450 (circa)

Publication:

Color: Hand Color

Size:
4.6 x 7 inches
11.7 x 17.8 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 beautifully decorated vellum leaf from a French Book of Hours. The leaf is illuminated with 15 initials and numerous line fillers in red, blue, black and gold leaf with penwork extending into the margins. The pinpricks made by the scribe for aligning the text can still be seen in the margin. The text is from Psalm 108 [109 KJV].

References:

Condition: A

Estimate: $200 - $250

Sold for: $150

Closed on 3/2/2005

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