Auction 139, Lot 742

"[Illuminated Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Medieval Manuscripts

Period: 1470 (circa)

Publication:

Color: Hand Color

Size:
4.5 x 6 inches
11.4 x 15.2 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.

This Litany of Saints is from a French Book of Hours, written in or near Rouen. Each one begins with an initial in blue and red with burnished gold, and ends with a line filler in the same colors, followed by "or" (a pro nobis - pray for us). Lines that list more than one Saint begin with "O" (omnes) and end with "orate."

References:

Condition: A

Marginal soiling.

Estimate: $160 - $200

Sold for: $100

Closed on 2/15/2012

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