(1) The manuscript was produced in Paris in c.1410-20. The calendar includes in red Geneviève, patron of Paris (3 Jan., 26 Nov.), and Germain, bishop of Paris (28 May).
(2) Private collection of James E. and Elizabeth J. Ferrell, the present owners (bookplate with initials).
text and illumination
Calendar in French, with an entry for every day (f.1r); Gospel extracts (f.13r); prayers ‘Obsecro te’ (f.17v), ‘O intemerata’ (f.20r); Hours of the Virgin, Use of Paris, with Matins (f.23r), with 9 lessons, Lauds (f.46v), Prime (f.58r), Terce (f.64r), Sext (f.68v), None (f.72v), Vespers (f.77r), Compline (f.84r); Penitential psalms (f.89r) with litany (f.101v), petitions and two collects; Hours of the Cross (f.106v) and of the Holy Spirit (f.110v); Office of the Dead, Use of Paris (f.114v); devotions in French, the 15 Joys of the Virgin, (f.157r), and Five Wounds of Our Lord, in seven stanzas (f.163r), ending with the prayer ‘Sainte vraye croix aoree’ (f.165r).
This manuscript is illuminated by the MASTER OF GUY DE LAVAL who was responsible for a Book of Hours for that duke (coll. Renate König, on deposit in Cologne, Erzdiözesanmuseum; see G. Bartz, Das Stundenbuch des Guy de Laval, 2004). This artist has also been called the Guise Master after his miniatures in the Hours of François de Guise (Chantilly, Musée Condé, ms.64) which he executed in collaboration with other Parisian artists. He shared his work with Parisian artists on a regular basis, and the fact that this manuscript is painted entirely by him is worth mentioning. Stylistically, he belongs to the circle of the Boucicaut Master, and although his modelling is less dense, his figures are more lively. His interpretation of traditional iconographies such as the Nativity with the baby lying on a large red bed is especially charming in the present Book of Hours.
The subjects of the miniatures are: (1) f.23r, Annunciation; (2) f.46v, Visitation; (3) f.58r, Nativity, with Joseph seated, the Virgin kneeling in adoration of the Child, who lies on a large bed (not in a manger); (4) f.64r, Annunciation to the Shepherds; (5) f.68v, Adoration of the Magi; (6) f.72v, Presentation in the Temple; (7) f.77r, Flight into Egypt; (8) f.84r, Coronation of the Virgin; (9) f.89r, David in Penitence; (10) f.106v, Crucifixion; (11) f.110v, Pentecost; (12) f.114v, Funeral service; (13) f.157r, Madonna and Child enthroned, the Virgin giving a small sprig of a plant to the child; (14) f.163r, Last Judgement.
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