FLEUR DE LYS-SHAPED BOOK OF HOURS, in Latin, use of Rome, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON PAPER
180 x 80mm. i + 117 leaves, each page with 24 lines written in a 'roman' hand in black ink within a liquid gold border in the shape of a half fleur de lys, spaces infilled with liquid gold fronds on blue or red grounds, line-fillers and one- and two-line initials of the same colours, ELEVEN LOBE-SHAPED MINIATURES (some offsetting and smudging of pigments, damage and scorching to upper and lower extremities and gutters of most folios and with repairs). Nineteenth-century brown morocco gilt, semé with fleur de lys, doublures of red morocco gilt, edges gauffered and gilt (upper cover detached).
Ownership notes on original flyleaf 1630; Charles de Viel-Castel ?father of the diplomat, writer and commandeur de Légion d'honneur with the same name, his signature 1808: Viscount Combermere, his signature C. Combermere, Malmaison, July 31 1815.
Table of Golden Numbers etc for the years 1553-1564 f.1v; Calendar, lacking January ff.2-12; Extract from the Gospel of John ff.13-14; Passion of Christ according to John ff.14v-24; Office of the Virgin ff.24v-67: matins 24v, lauds 33v, prime 43v, terce 47v, sext 51, none 54v, vespers 57v, compline 62v; Seven Penitential Psalms and Litany ff.67-81; Office of the Dead ff.81-103; Suffrages ff.103-109v; Prayers before and after Communion etc ff.110-117.
The miniatures in the outer lobes of the fleur de lys are as follows:
f.14v Crucifixion with the Virgin and St John; f.24v Annunciation; f.33v Visitation; f.43v Nativity; f.47v Annunciation to the Shepherds; f.51 Adoration to the Magi; f.54v Presentation in the Temple; f.57 Flight into Egypt; f.63 Coronation of the Virgin; f.67 David in Penitence; f.81 Job on the Dungheap.
Only one other book of this format is recorded in Gruel, Manuel historique et bibliographique de L'amateur de reliures, 1905, II, pp.9-11, pl.G (Amiens, Bibl. Municip., fonds l'Escalopier 501). It is of the same date as the present manuscript and was originally made for Diane de Poitiers and Henri II.