Catalog Archive
Auction 130, Lot 838

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1470 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

4.5 x 5.9 inches
11.4 x 15 cm
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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 handsome vellum leaf from a French Book of Hours, written in or near Rouen. The verso is embellished with a two-line initial in bright colors and gold and a panel of leaves in the margin. The text is from the Office of the Dead, Job 10.


Condition: B+

There are some ink marks in the bottom margin.

Estimate: $180 - $240


Closed on 12/2/2009