Lot 46
ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT. Book of Hours, Use of Rouen, c.1475-85
Sold for £6,000 (US$ 10,084) inc. premium
Lot Details
Book of Hours, Use of Rouen, 99 leaves (modern pencil foliation in lower right includes old parchment front flyleaf), 2 modern parchment flyleaves, I12, II8, III10, IV-VI8, VII8-1 (1 missing, probably a miniature showing David in Penitence), VIII8-1 (8 missing, probably a miniature showing Pentecost), IX12, X4, XI12, XII2+1 (probably a bifolium missing after 2), written space 100 x 66 mm., ruled in red for 16 lines per page in one column, in brown ink in a regular Gothic liturgical bookhand, rubrics in red and mostly in French, 4 LARGE ARCH-TOPPED MINIATURES WITH FULL DECORATIVE BORDERS (of 6, one with some water damage), versals touched in yellow, one- and two-line initials in burnished gold on red or blue grounds with white penwork, three-line initials in blue on burnished gold grounds with tendrils and ivyleaf decoration, some staining and rubbing, 2 leaves cut (including the last with loss of later text), one or two names of saints cleanly cut from the calendar and single one- or two-line initials cut from the text, modern vellum, gilt morocco label "Horae B.V.M. 15 Cent." on spine, small 4to (168 x 116 mm.), [Rouen, c.1475-1485]


  • Text (following the incorrect pencil foliation):

    Fol. 1-12v: Calendar; fol. 13-17: Gospel Sequence: fol. 17-20: Obsecro te (rubric in French); fol. 20-22v: O Intemerata (rubric in French); fol. 23-54v: Office of the Virgin for the use of Rouen: 23-31 (Matins), 31-38v (Lauds), 38v-39 Suffrage to St Nicholas, 39-39v Suffrage to St Margaret, 39v-40 Suffrage to St Katherine, 40-40v Suffrage to Peace, 41-44 (Prime), 44v-46v (Terce), 46v-48 (Sext), 48v-50v (None), 50-51v (Vespers), 52-54v (Compline); fol. 55-62v: Penitential Psalms (incomplete, lacks beginning); fol. 63-66: Litany; fol. 68v-70v: Hours of the Holy Spirit (incomplete, lacks beginning); fol. 71-92v: Office of the Dead, use of Rouen; fol. 93-98v: 15 Joys of the Virgin Mary/ Doulce Dame (in French); 98v-99: 7 Requests of the Lord/ Douls dieu, douls pere (in French; incomplete, lacks 1-2 leaves); fol. 99-99v: Stabat Mater, added by a later hand, incomplete.


    fol. 24: Annunciation, fol. 42: Nativity, fol. 67v: Crucifixion, fol. 72: Burial Scene.

    The illumination was executed by an artist who was probably not based in the centre of Rouen, but who must have been influenced strongly by the compositions of one of Rouen's most famous illuminators, the Master of the Rouen Échevinage also known as the Master of the Geneva Latini. Although the miniatures in this manuscript are a far and very charming cry from this artist's achievements, we can clearly see how he adopted the familiar repertoire of compositional elements and decorative vocabulary, including detailed patterning of textiles and elaborate architectural constructions (esp. in the Annunciation). In the artistic milieu of this artist, compositions were often repeated - which is also again evident in the Annunciation. The border decoration in the margins of the large miniatures also clearly point to Rouen around 1480.

    Provenance: Ownership note "du Mon(signore) de Notre Dame de Charité" in an eighteenth- or nineteenth-century hand.
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