BOOK OF HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [?Lille, 1490s]
BOOK OF HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [?Lille, 1490s]
BOOK OF HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [?Lille, 1490s]
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BOOK OF HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [?Lille, 1490s]

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BOOK OF HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [?Lille, 1490s]

180 X 123mm. i + 112 leaves, foliation followed here 1-124 predating the excision of 12 leaves, TWENTY SMALL MINIATURES WITH BORDERS TO SIDE MARGIN (lacking 14 leaves with 12 large and two or three small miniatures). 16th-century panelled red-stained leather over wooden boards stamped with tools including two with fleur de lys. Deerskin pouch.

PROVENANCE:
(1) The illumination and texts suggest an origin in the southern Netherlands; some unexpected feasts and St Martial as an Apostle in the litany might result from a patron from southern France. The vertical catchwords could indicate Bruges but some border designs point closer to France, possibly Lille. The date 1463 has been added on ff.7v, 63v, 123. (2) J V D BOGAERT me emit: on front pastedown. (3) L B D K (?): on flyleaf. (4) ALLAN HEYWOOD BRIGHT: purchased in Birmingham in 1894, autograph notes on f.124v and front pastedown; loose in pouch, his account of the ms, essentially as in Notes and Queries, 1895, p.127, with the Rev. J.C. Jackson’s response.

CONTENT:
Calendar ff.1-6; Gospel extracts lacking one leaf ff.7-11; Obsecro te, O intemerata ff.11-15v; Office of the Virgin, use of Rome, each hour lacking opening ff.17-63v; Hours of the Cross lacking opening ff.66-67v, Hours of the Holy Spirit lacking opening ff.69-70; Penitential Psalms, lacking opening, and Litany ff.72-82v; Office of the Dead, use of Rome, lacking opening ff.84-113; Suffrages lacking one leaf ff.113v-123.

ILLUMINATION:
The miniatures relate stylistically to the Master of Edward IV, named from his contribution to manuscripts ordered by the English King in Bruges (see T. Kren and S. McKendrick, Illuminating the Renaissance, 2003, pp.295-305, 335-343). In the troubled 1480s and 1490s the Master apparently sought refuge in Lille, a likely place for this illuminator to have absorbed his style. Imitating the Master’s method of indicating features with deft dark lines, he also followed the Master’s attractively restricted colours, modelled and detailed with liquid gold. He shares some characteristics with two identified Lille followers of the Master but his work is far more accomplished (see D. Vanwijnsberghe, ‘Marketing books for burgher: Jean Markant’s activity in Tournai, Lille and Bruges’, E. Morrison and T. Kren eds, Flemish Manuscript Painting in Context, 2006, pp.135-148, and ‘Le Maître des Heures de Claremont: un enlumineur lillois du troisième quart du XVe siècle’, M. Hofmann and C. Zöhl eds, Quand la peinture était dans les livres: mélanges en l’honneur de François Avril, 2007, pp.266-381).

The small miniatures are on ff.7, 8, 9, 11, 14, 113v, 114, 114v, 115, 115v, 116, 116v, 117v, 118v, 120, 120v, 121, 121v, 122, 122v.

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Eugenio Donadoni
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