21
21
Book of Hours, Use of Amiens, in Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Flanders (Amiens), late fifteenth century]
Estimate
6,0008,000
LOT SOLD. 10,625 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
21
Book of Hours, Use of Amiens, in Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Flanders (Amiens), late fifteenth century]
Estimate
6,0008,000
LOT SOLD. 10,625 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

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Book of Hours, Use of Amiens, in Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on vellum [Flanders (Amiens), late fifteenth century]
150 leaves (plus later paper endleaves), 172mm. by 116mm., wanting single leaves after fols.34, 43, 45, 143 and 2 leaves after fol.38, else complete, misbound, the original order of the leaves being fols.1-12, 21-48, 16, 20, 17-18, 15, 19, 44-48, 14, 13, 85-95, 144-50 and 96-143, 16 lines in dark brown ink in an elegant and angular late gothic bookhand, rubrics in red, capitals touched in yellow, one- and 2-line initials in leafy liquid gold on blue and burgundy grounds, line-fillers to match, nine large historiated initials, 4-lines high, with panel borders of realistic flowers and insects strewn on a dull-gold ground, large arch-topped miniature with a full border of intertwining realistic acanthus-leaf fronds enclosing a bird and quadruped with a lion-like mane, all on pink grounds, one slight scratch and occasional spots to miniature, some leaves throughout rubbed and slightly discoloured, trimmed to edge of decoration, marbled endleaves, French seventeenth-century gilt-tooled brown morocco
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Provenance

provenance

(1) The Use is that of Amiens and the Calendar includes Firminus (1 and 25 September, deposition 13 January) and Honoratus (16 May) in red, both bishops of Amiens, as well as Fuscian (11 December), martyr of the city.

(2) Sold in our rooms, 5 December 1978, lot 52, for £4000, to the present owner.

Catalogue Note

text

The text, while now misbound, originally comprised: a Calendar in French, the Gospel Sequences, the Obsecro te and O intemerata, the Hours of the Cross and of the Holy Ghost, the Penitential Psalms and a Litany, the Office of the Dead and Suffrages to the Saints incorporating the Stabat Mater and other prayers to the Virgin.

illumination

Until 1477 Amiens was part of Burgundy, and its artistic links were to that region and the cultural innovations of the Burgundian court and the workshops of Flanders. The borders here show clear influence of the Ghent/Bruges style of painting. The miniature with David in prayer before a detailed gothic architectural exterior, has been identified as the work of the Master of the Dresden Prayer Book (fl. c.1465-1515), or a close follower. He was named after a highly unusual Book of Hours, now Dresden, Sächsische Landesbibliothek MS. A311. He was one of the most original Flemish artists of the second half of the fifteenth century, introducing a novel palette with bright oranges, teals, burgundies, rich blues and sometimes black, often in surprising combinations, and favouring the border motif of a densely-twisting naturalistic woody plant (as here and that illustrated in Kren and McKendrick, Illuminating the Renaissance, 2003, no.49, pp.210-12); cf. also A. Bovey, Jean de Carpentin's Hours, The Genius of the Master of the Dresden Prayer Book, 2011.

The tiny and detailed historiated initials show the Visitation (fol.15r), the Entombment of Christ (fol.26v), the Virgin and Child (fol.30r), the Nativity (fol.57v), the Annunciation to the Shepherds (fol.63r), the Adoration of the Magi (fol.67r), the Presentation in the Temple (fol.70v), the Flight into Egypt (fol.74v) and the Massacre of the Innocents (fol.51r).

Western Manuscripts & Miniatures

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