"[Book of Hours Leaf]", Anon.
Subject: Early Printing
Period: 1500 (circa)
Color: Hand Color
5.8 x 8.8 inches
14.7 x 22.4 cm
This leaf is from the brief transitional period when the new technology of printing with movable type was combined with the more labor intensive methods of hand painting. The earliest printers were trained in the manuscript tradition and incorporated the conventions of historiated initials and illustrations into their early work. At first they left those spaces blank for the illuminator to complete entirely by hand. Later they developed printing methods (using woodcuts or iron engravings) to decorate the leaves.
Unusual vellum leaf printed in Gothic textura type with illuminated capitals in red, blue and burnished gold leaf. The text is surrounded by elaborate iron engravings that include plants and animals, including dragons and a centaur. These leaves are from the transitional period when the new technology of printing with movable type was combined with the more labor intensive methods of hand painting. Printed vellum Book of Hours leaves are very scarce, as they were only produced between 1496 and 1530. The text is from Psalm 64, and beginning with the large "T" on recto it translates as:
A Hymn, O God, becometh thee in Sion: and a vow shall be paid to thee in Jerusalem.
O hear my prayer: all flesh shall come to thee.
The words of the wicked have prevailed over us: and thou wilt pardon our transgressions.
Blessed is he whom thou hast chosen and taken to thee: he shall dwell in thy courts.
We shall be filled with the good things of thy house; holy is thy temple, wonderful in justice.
Hear us, O God our saviour, who art the hope of all the ends of the earth, and in the sea afar off.
A bright sheet with minor marginal soiling.