Catalog Archive
Auction 118, Lot 922

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1460 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

4.8 x 6.4 inches
12.2 x 16.3 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.

An exceptionally brilliant vellum leaf from a Book of Hours, created in Paris. Both sides of the leaf have numerous initials and line fillers in red, white and burnished gold. The panel borders of both sides are lovely, with delicate stems, flowers, berries and buds created with meticulous pen work. This text is from the Office of the Dead, Martins, Psalm 24.


Condition: A+

Extremely bright and clean.

Estimate: $350 - $400

Sold for: $250

Closed on 3/6/2007