4 June 2008
PENTECOST, full-page miniature on a leaf from a Book of Hours, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM
[Paris, c.1500-1510]152 x 105mm, the Virgin kneeling to the left, under a baldachin and before a prie-dieu, with the kneeling figure of St John the Evangelist to the right, and Peter and Apostles behind, most looking up at descending gold rays, the whole within a frame of liquid gold Renaissance architectural forms. On the reverse, 17 lines of text in French written in a gothic bookhand (a few tiny losses of pigment).
A finely-painted miniature, its palette of strong, bright colours enhanced by a lavish use of liquid gold and classicising Renaissance framing, typical of Parisian book production in the early 16th century. This full-page miniature is likely to have appeared on a verso, introducing the Hours of the Holy Spirit. The text on the recto, containing prayers surrounding the Passion and Ascension, is presuambly part of a prayer added subsequently on available blank leaves at the appropriate place within the manuscript.
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