Catalog Archive
Auction 94, Lot 453

"[Illuminated Leaf]",

Subject: Medieval Manuscript

Period: 1450 (circa)

Publication: Book of Hours


4.5 x 7.5 inches
11.4 x 19.1 cm
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Very rare vellum leaf with The Hours of the Holy Spirit. The entire verso is superbly decorated with a miniature of the Pentecost. The Dove of the Holy Spirit is shown with the ‘flames of inspiration’ showering down upon the apostles who are drinking from the life-giving fountain to acquire strength before going out to convert the world. All twelve figures around the fountain are shown with a halo of gold encircling their heads. The fountain and several coats are also painted in liquid gold. The scene is surrounded in an elaborate border of acanthus leaves, flowers and two mystical dragon-like creatures. Below the miniature are the words, "Domine labia mea aperies. Et os meum an" (Lord, open my lips. And my mouth) starting with a historiated ‘D’ illuminated in red, blue and white with a flower at center. The recto is the last page from the Office of the Cross and is largely blank with only five lines of text and the remaining space with only the rules for the scribe. The border is decorated on three sides with acanthus leaves in blue on a dark purple background and flowers and leaves on a gold background.


Condition: A+

Estimate: $3,000 - $3,250


Closed on 3/7/2001