Lot 4
  • 4

Breviary, of Cistercian Use, in Latin, six leaves from an illuminated manuscript on vellum

3,000 - 5,000 GBP
bidding is closed


6 leaves (including a single bifolia), 158mm. by 103mm., modern pencil pagination 27-8, 29-30, 31-2, 63-4, 115-16 and 139-40, double column, 25 lines, written-space 108mm. by 71mm., written in dark brown ink in two sizes of a small gothic liturgical hand, decorative cadels, rubrics and capitals touched in red, some versal initials in red or blue, several illuminated initials on each page: two 4-line, the rest 2-line, in blue and pink with tracery,  infilled with burnished gold grounds and with branching marginal extensions, some initials historiated (pp.32, 30 and 139; with lacertine animals, 2 with human heads; p. 63: bust of a bearded man), and with various birds standing in the margins on the initials (pp. 31, 63 and 64), some minor damp-stains to inner margin, else in bright and fresh condition, in clear plastic wallet

Catalogue Note

Other leaves from this manuscript have appeared in Maggs Bulletin 20 (1995), nos. 42-3, and cat.1262 (1998), no.13; our rooms 19 June 2001, lot 10; again 6 December 2001, lot 2; again 6 December 2005, lot 10; and most significantly our rooms 5 July 2005, lot 90, when a substantial bound fragment of 128 leaves was sold. As identified there, the manuscript was of Cistercian use, and was perhaps from the nunnery of Paraclete near Amiens, founded in 1219. In this context the exquisite illumination is remarkable in a book produced by a monastic order renowned for the simplicity and austerity of their decoration.