Description: illuminated manuscript on vellum. (280 x 200 mm). 168 leaves (plus 4 original flyleaves), complete. collation: 2 blank flyleaves + i-ii6, iii-viii8, ix6, x8, xi6, xii-xviii8, xix6, xx-xxi8, xxii4, xxiii6, + 2 blank flyleaves. Without signatures or catchwords. calligraphy, decoration, and illumination: 15 lines, ruled in pale red ink, written-space 124 x 80 mm, written in dark brown ink in two sizes of a compressed gothic liturgical hand, rubrics in red, major entries in the Calendar in red or blue, capitals touched in yellow, one-line initials throughout in ivyleaf and floral designs in red, blue and orange with white tracery on highly burnished gold grounds, broad panel borders on every page richly decorated in an infinite variety of patterns of coloured flowers and acanthus leaves, fruit, some vases, faces, etc., some on parti-coloured gold grounds, fifty-eight very large miniatures in arched compartments with full borders of flowers, fruit, acanthus leaves, etc., and birds, grotesques, animals, etc., in full color, faint traces of where modern paper interleaving has been removed, a few exceedingly insignificant marks but throughout in extremely fine fresh condition, with very wide margins preserving original painted edges, in gilt painted with designs of flowers and coloured acanthus leaves (like the borders, and presumably by the same workshop). binding: Nineteenth-century dark red-brown velvet, vellum endleaves, two elaborate gilt metal clasps in gothic designs on velvet straps from edges of upper cover fitting over metal pins on lower cover, the clasps enclosing the arms of the Priory of Saint-Lo, in a dark brown morocco fitted padded case, title gilt. provenance: (1) The manuscript was made in Rouen for the woman shown in the minatures on fols.118v and 134v. The O intemerata is written in the form for use by a woman. The text includes a very rare commemoration of St.Lo (or Lauto) described as 'nostre patron' (fol.156r). When it was first published in detail in 1869, it was suggested therefore that the manuscript must have been made for the house of Augustinian canons regular of Saint-Lo in Rouen, founded in 1114, and the arms on the clasps are those of the priory (or, a leopard gules, a chief indented azure with 3 fleurs-de-lys and 2 demi-fleurs-de-lys or; cf. J. Meurgey, Armorial de l'Eglise de France, 1938, p.267). However, the manuscript is for lay use, not that of a monastery. The Use throughout is that of Coutances, and St.Lo is simply the patron saint of the city of Coutances. There is no doubt that the book was made in the Norman capital but for an owner living in the smaller diocese about 120 miles to the east of Rouen. Whoever the first owner was, she must have belonged to a family of very considerable wealth. (2) Monsieur Lebrument; his sale, Paris, Catalogue du Manuscrit des Heures de Saint-Lo de Rouen, Paris, Drouot (Quevremont), 17 April 1869, lot 1, sold for 12900 francs; subsequently published in a full catalogue by A. Bachelin, Description du Livre d'Heures du Prieure de Saint-Lo de Rouen, 1869. (3) Ricardo Heredia, comte de Benaharis; his sale, Paris, I, 22 May 1891, lot 84 (a 10-page description, pp.25-35 ("... la conservation merveilleuse de ce manuscrit, le nombre, la beaute et la finesse des ses miniatures, la richesse de coloris et la variete infinie d'ornamentation de ses bordures, la purete de son velin et la grandeur des ses marges, en font un des plus beaux specimens des Livres d'heures du XVe siecle"). (4) Albert de Naurois, with his gilt bookplate (the same as in J. Paul Getty Museum, MS. Ludwig XV.7, which was sold to Edouard Rahir before 1924; cf. Rietstap pl.CCLXI). (5) Apparently Baron Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1934), who formed the finest collection of illuminated manuscripts of modern times; by descent to an owner in Switzerland; sale in our London rooms, 6 December 1983, lot 83. It has been known subsequently as the "Rothschild Hours". Text: A Calendar, in French (fol.1r), fairly sparse, including in red or blue the feasts of the dedication of Coutances Cathedral (12 July), St.Lo (or Lauto, bishop of Coutances 528-68, 21 September), and the relics of Coutances (30 September), with names in black including St.Romanus of Rouen and his translation; the Hours of the Virgin [Use of Coutances], of 'mixed' format incorporating the Hours of the Cross and of the Holy Ghost, with Matins (fol.13r), Lauds (fol.22r), Prime (fol.34r), Terce (fol.40v), Sext (fol.46r), None (fol.51r), Vespers (fol.56v) and Compline (fol.61r); the Penitential Psalms (fol.67r) and Litany (fol.76v); the Office of the Dead [Use of Coutances] (fol.81r); the Obsecro te (fol.108r), in male form ("famulo tuo", fol.110r) and the O intemerata, in female form ("ego peccatrix", fol.113r); the Gospel Sequences (fol.114r); the rhyming hymn to the Virgin Glorieuse vierge, in French (fol.118v, cf. Leroquais, II, pp.314-22); the Quinze Joyes in French (fol.128r); the prayer of Bede on the Seven Words on the Cross (fol.132v); prayers to one's guardian angel (fol.134r) and for use at Mass; Memorials, not only saints but also to events in the life of Christ and the Virgin, opening with a Commemoration de la nativite nostre seigneur (fol.137r) and including a Commemoration a monsieur saint lo nostre patron (fol.156r); and a rhyming verse in French on the physiognomy of Christ, la fourme du corps humain nostre seigneur, beginning "En temps que fut octovien..." (fol.165r), all ending on fol.168r, "... En Eructavit cor meum, verbum bonum, Amen". illumination: This astonishing and exceptionally large manuscript is certainly the finest Rouen Book of Hours in existence. The city of Rouen in Normandy was itself probably the single most prolific centre for the production of manuscript Books of Hours in all Europe, and for about sixty years after the liberation of Rouen from English occupation in 1450 some of the most sumptuous and wantonly extravagant manuscripts ever made were illuminated and sold there. The present manuscript is by far the richest and largest Book of Hours ever recorded from the hand or workshop of the leading Rouen manuscript artist known variously as 'JACOBUS TEN EYKEN' (named by Durrieu after the scribe of B.N. ms. fr.283-5, dated 1469) or as the MASTER OF THE GENEVA LATINI - as named by Plummer (Last Flowering, 1982, pp.66-7) - or as the MASTER OF THE ECHEVINAGE DE ROUEN - as named by Avril (Manuscrits a Peintures, 1993, pp.169-73). If the present book had been more fully published earlier, the artist might well have been known as the Master of the Hours of St-Lo. This innovative and highly successful painter clearly specialised partly in the production of vast chronicles and literary texts, like copies of the Bouquechardiere of Jean de Courcy, and partly in making large numbers of a remarkably homogeneous group of Books of Hours of the Use of Rouen and other cities of Normandy. The names of several Rouen illuminators of the right date are recorded in archives - painters such as Jean Masselin, Jean Le Moigne, Guillaume Coutil and others - but so far the Master himself remains unidentified. Some of the principal miniatures here incorporate repeated initials 'A' and/or 'K' into the decoration (fols.13r, 141r, 156r and 165r) but it is not clear what significance, if any, can be read into the choice of these letters. "More research needs to be done into this publishing house and the workshop of artists with which it collaborated'' (Delaisse, Waddesdon catalogue, 1977, p.264). The Hours of St-Lo will always be a central Book of Hours of the whole group, and the richest example of the style. Since its reappearance in 1983, the manuscript has been cited not only in the literature on Rouen illumination (see the bibliography below) but also in dealers' catalogues as the ultimate Rouen manuscript (it is referred to, for example, in Tenschert, Leuchtendes Mittelalter, II, cat.25, 1990, p.544, and Sourget, Manuscrits et Livres Precieux, n.d., p.10). The miniatures are crisp and bright, heightened with silver as well as liquid and highly burnished gold. The wide range of the green pigments is characteristic of the painter, and he uses unexpected areas of distant pale pea-green grass as if spots of landscape are suddenly flooded with shafts of sunlight. There is a very striking bright yellow pigment, usually heightened in red. Foreground textures are generally delicately traced with hatching. Religion and medieval secular life mingle in the iconography. Miniatures are filled with complex details of architecture and landscape, with fantastic fairytale castles and gardens often receding into distant lakes with tiny boating parties and cities beyond cities on the horizons. The Heredia cataloguer claimed to recognise the actual buildings and streets of Rouen in the backgrounds - the cathedral, the church of St-Ouen, the Montaigne Sainte-Catherine, all with the Seine flowing past - and identified the seated shepherdess on fol.40v as Joan of Arc, whose martyrdom in Rouen had occurred easily within the artist's memory. The iconography is exceptionally rich and varied. The Hours of the Holy Ghost has a full cycle of illustrations, some of them very unusual indeed (such as the Adoration of the Holy Face at Matins and the Transfiguration at Vespers). The arrangement and the iconography of the Memorials, or Suffrages, is extremely unusual, for it instead of following the traditional ranking of saints as in a Litany (apostles first, then martyrs, confessors, virgins, etc.), as in a standard Book of Hours, it follows the liturgical year, from Christmas (25 December), St.Stephen (26 December), St.John the Evangelist (27 December), Holy Innocents (28 December), St.Thomas Becket (29 December), the Circumcision (1 January), Epiphany (6 January), the Presentation (2 February), and so on, a cycle which includes events in the life of Christ and introduces rare subjects and others which had already appeared earlier in the book in the Hours of the Virgin. The manuscript's borders are filled with grotesques and surrealistic and multi-coloured beasts, and little scenes of comic life in microcosm among savage acanthus leaves and giant dangling fruit, such as peas, pears and grapes. Some borders have backgrounds of shimmering liquid gold. Sometimes naturalistic wild animals occur, such as a camel (fol.39v), a deer (fol.60r), apes (fols.67r and 141r) and bears (fol.85v). Occasionally there are touches of startling realism, like the butterfly on fol.55v. The borders are crowded with flowers, including distinctive daisies with pink-edged petals and strawberries often growing from flowerpots. It is important to emphasise the extreme richness of the Hours of St-Lo. It has 58 large miniatures, nearly 250 borders, and well over a thousand illuminated initials. The next most famous manuscript from the workshop, the so-called Hours of Chretienne de France (Arsenal ms.562), has only fourteen miniatures. The closely-similar Waddesdon Rouen Book of Hours, MS.12 there and also from the library of Edmond de Rothschild, similarly has fourteen. The copy in the Last Flowering exhibition, no.88, has fifteen miniatures. One of the richest of all, the Landau Book of Hours in the Beck sale (our London rooms, 16 June 1997, lot 26), has nineteen. The present manuscript has more than three times as many miniatures, and many are of subjects probably unique in any Rouen Book of Hours. Note too the vast size, virtually folio. The lower margins are more than 4 inches wide. Finally, one must emphasise the freshness of condition throughout, complete even with its original blanks, untrimmed with its contemporary gilt edges which are painted in the same style as the borders inside the book, probably even by the same artist: note the flowers growing from a pot along the lower edge, and compare the borders on fols.51r, 66r and 145r. These painted edges convey a rare sense of the pristine state of the book, from inside to out, a luxury manuscript exactly as it left the workshop. All the miniatures are in arch-topped compartments, approximately 126 x 79 mm. the subjects are: 1. Folio 13r, The Annunciation, the Virgin kneeling on the left in front of a sedilia before a prie-dieu, Gabriel on the right in a richly-embroidered coped studded with jewels holding a scroll "Ave gracia plena dominu[s] tecum", all set in a gothic church, tiled floor, tall lattice windows, canopied roof with sculptures of Adam and Eve and the Tree of Life, and a glimpse of a landscape through the open door to he right; full border including a parrot and two bearded gladiators, one in armour, one almost naked. 2. Folio 22r, The Visitation, St.Elizabeth greeting the Virgin who is attended by two angels, a castle to the right, all set in an elegant landscape with the walls of a many-turreted town beside a lake with little people and a dog hurrying along a road towards the city gate; full border including a rabbit (doubtless symbolising fecundity) and a wild man mounted on a bull-headed animal. 3. Folio 31r, The Betrayal of Christ, a crowded night scene in a garden of sinister jagged rocks with the exotic towers of Jerusalem beyond against a starry sky, some soldiers carrying torches; St.Peter re-sheathing his sword after cutting off the ear of Malchus who has collapsed at the feet of Christ in the left foreground; the border including two polychrome grotesques. 4. Folio 32v, The Adoration of the Holy Face, the Virgin and the apostles at the crossing of a great gothic church kneeling before an altar where the vernicle of St.Veronica is displayed over a carved altarpiece; the border including two grotesques, one partly formed of a man with a very long neck. 5. Folio 34r, The Nativity of Christ, set in a thatched stable with a tapestry lining one wall, the Virgin and Joseph with two angels adoring the Child who lies on the ground, the ox and the ass eating behind, a starry sky above; the border including three grotesques, two with animal heads and one with the head of a girl. 6. Folio 38v, The Scourging of Christ, set in a gothic tiled and vaulted room with coloured marble pillars, four ruffians tying up and beating Christ, Pilate and an attendant watching through a window; the border including a peacock and a grotesque bird with the head of a dragon. 7. Folio 39v, The Ascension of Christ, in a landscape, the feet of Christ disappearing into the heavens leaving footprints on the dewy grassy, the Virgin and Apostles gathered around gazing upwards in prayer; the border including a griffin and a camel. 8. Folio 40v, The Annunciation to the Shepherds, a pastoral scene on the hills above a great gothic city, a shepherdess playing with a lamb, a dog asleep, three shepherds (one with bagpipes) gazing up at an angel in the sky with a scroll "gloria in excelsis deo", and far below on the road into Bethlehem people going to and fro about their business; the border including a shepherd waving his club at a wolf carrying off a sheep. 9. Folio 44r, Christ carrying the Cross, a crowded scene outside the walls of Jerusalem, Christ in the centre helped by a bearded man and urged on by soldiers, the saints following on the left, towers behind surmounted by stars and crescents; the border including two jesters, one with bauble and the other with bagpipes. 10. Folio 45r, Pentecost, the Virgin and the Apostles gathered before a tapestry in the chancel of a gothic church, the Holy Dove descending from above; the border including an animal like a deer or gazelle and the figure of a praying man emerging from the decoration. 11. Folio 46r, The Adoration of the Magi, the Virgin enthroned before a tapestry in a ruined thatched stable, the three Kings presenting gifts to the Child and laying them on a stool in the foreground, glimpse of a landscape behind, the Star of Bethlehem above; the border including a winged dragon and a grotesque carrying a golden vase. 12. Folio 49r, The Nailing to the Cross, the Cross laid out diagonally on a hillside as five workmen fashion nails at a forge and attach Christ to the Cross under the direction of Pilate and his attendants, all in a landscape with Jerusalem behind; the border including a two-headed grotesque and a bird. 13. Folio 50r, The Apostles Preaching in Tongues after Pentecost, St.Peter in a pulpit on the left emphasising a point by touching the thumb of his other hand, a crowd of laypeople standing or seated on the grass or on benches, all in a field set apart by a low stone wall from a landscape with distant castles; the border including a grotesque in prayer and a bird. 14. Folio 51r, The Presentation in the Temple, the Virgin presenting the Christ Child to Simeon dressed in a rich cope, accompanied by Joseph and others including a woman with a basket of doves as a sacrifice, all set in a church with a carved gothic canopied ceiling; the border including a grotesque, a winged dragon and a pot of roses.. 15. Folio 54v, The Crucifixion, elaborately shown with Christ between the two thieves, a bearded man in a red velvet jacket piercing the side of Christ with a lance and another man offered a sponge, crowds of many soldiers on the right and of other soldiers and saints on the left, St.Mary Magdalene clasping the foot of the Cross, all in a landscape before Jerusalem with day sky turning to night; the border including two grotesques. 16. Folio 55v, The Baptism of Christ, set in the Jordan valley below a hilltop castle, Christ standing naked in the centre as St. John from the right bank tips water onto Christ's head from a blue and white ceramic jug and an angel holds Christ's robe on the left-hand bank; the border including two birds and a naturalistic red admiral butterfly. 17. Folio 56v, The Flight into Egypt, Joseph leading the Virgin and the Christ Child on their donkey to the left through a landscape safely away from a distant moated city, an attendant behind with two baskets, the Miracle of the Sower behind; the border including two grotesque beasts and a polychrome Egyptian bird. 18. Folio 59r, The Deposition, Christ is lowered from the Cross by two men while a female figure holds one of the ladders and the Virgin and other Holy Women mourn; set in a tranquil landscape with a glimpse of the towers of Jerusalem in the distance; the border including two grotesques within decorative shapes. 19. Folio 60r, The Transfiguration, Christ in the centre on a little grassy platform (Mount Tabor) standing full-length in a white robe with his face and hands shimmering in liquid gold, SS. Peter, James and John falling to the ground, God the Father appearing above flanked by Moses and Elias in the sky; the border including a salamander (appropriately, as the animal which can pass through fire unharmed) and a stag. 20. Folio 61r, The Coronation of the Virgin, set on a vast triple gothic throne, Christ blessing the Virgin who sits on his right hand, an angel crowning her and two other angels playing music; the border including a grotesque and a bearded man emerging from the decoration. 21. Folio 65r, The Entombment of Christ, the Body is lowered into the sarcophagus by Joseph of Arimathea and a companion as St.John comforts the Virgin and the Holy Women and as St.Mary Magdalene kisses the dead hand of Christ, all set in a landscape with hills and Jerusalem behind; the border including a grotesque and a centaur-like creature blowing a trumpet. 22. Folio 66r, The Last Judgement, Christ seated on a rainbow in the centre with his feet on a golden orb, two angels blowing trumpets to summon souls out of the earth below, other angels holding the Cross and the pillar of the flagellation, the Virgin and many saints kneeling on the left and right; the border including a naked woman emerging from the decoration and a winged grotesque with a human torso blowing a trumpet. 23. Folio 67r, King David reproved by Nathan, the king kneeling with his harp beside him at a prie-dieu in front of an elaborate throne in the porch of a gothic building, Nathan on the left pointing up towards the angel of vengeance bearing a sword with God above, with a view of a landscape over a tapestry showing a fine moated city with boats sailing in the water and another distant city on the horizon; the border including an ape wearing a hat and a dog chasing a stag into the forest. 24. Folio 81r, The Three Living and the Three Dead, set by a very tall gothic wayside cross outside a great gothic city, three cadaverous cackling skeletons on the right confronting three elegantly-dressed wild-eyed young men on the left on horses which shy and rise up at the terrible sight, all in a graceful landscape with a boating party on a distant lake by a town; the border including a grotesque and skeleton aiming a spear at a fleeing naked man. 25. Folio 85v, A Funeral Mass, set in a vast gothic cathedral, three priests at an altar on the left, hooded mourners on benches on either side of the draped bier in the foreground with candles at each corner, and a group of four further priests in rich copes singing from a book on a double-sided lectern in the right foreground; the border including two bears, one grasping a ragged tree-trunk. 26. Folio 108r, The Pieta, the Virgin at the foot of the Cross with the Body of Christ across her lap, St.John and the Holy Women on either side, angels hovering above, all set in a landscape with the road winding from Calvary to Jerusalem; the border including the vernicle with the Holy Face and a grotesque with a club. 27. Folio 111v, The Virgin and Child enthroned attended by St. John the Evangelist, set in a gothic interior, the Virgin offering fruit to the Child who turns instead to bless St.John who holds the poisoned chalice; the border including a peacock and a grotesque beast with a sword. 28. Folio 118v, The Virgo Lactans, adored by the owner of the manuscript, the Virgin and Child enthroned in the centre with two angels holding a crown above the Virgin's head, the Virgin herself bearing a breast for the Child, the throne set before a tapestry in a gothic church with a kneeling laywoman in prayer in the right foreground; the border including two grotesques, one on crutches, one with a bucket on its tail. 29. Folio 134r, A Guardian Angel, the owner of the manuscript kneeling before an angel who stands holding a cross and a shield emblazoned with the Holy Monogram `ihs', all set in a tiled interior before a tapestry with God the Father above surrounded by angels; the border including two grotesques, one with crutches. 30. Folio 137r, The Nativity of Christ, set in a partially ruined stable, the Virgin and Joseph adoring the Child with two angels between them, the ox and ass eating on the left, two shepherds looking over a wattle fence on the right; the border including a grotesque centaur aiming a bow and arrow at a bird. 31. Folio 138r, The Lapidation St.Stephen, in a landscape, three men in medieval dress picking up stone and throwing them at the saint under the direction of a seated man, perhaps Saul before his conversion, with hills and a vast city receding into the distance behind; the border including two grotesques. 32. Folio 139r, St. John on Patmos, the evangelist seated on the grass writing on a scroll on his lap "In princi[pio]", a eagle on the left holding out the end of the scroll in its beak, a devil on the right attempting to seize St.John's inkpot to prevent him writing, God in the sky above, all in a very fine seascape with a huge city and medieval port on the mainland with many ships and tiny figures crossing a bridge and looking over the parapet (a tiny echo of Van Eyck's Rolin Madonna), with towering hills on either side; the border including an owl and a grotesque. 33. Folio 140r, The Massacre of the Innocents, soldiers in medieval armour (with various initials embroidered on their tunics) murdering the children in a landscape as Herod rides up at the head of his army; the border including a peacock and a grotesque with a female human head and torso. 34. Folio 141r, The Martyrdom of St.Thomas Becket, set in Canterbury Cathedral with five soldiers in armour bursting in and stabbing the archbishop as he prays at an altar attended by an acolyte; the border including a fox lying on the grass and an ape climbing in the foliage. 35. Folio 142r, The Circumcision, the High Priest holding out a knife towards the Child whom the Virgin holds over a drum-shaped altar, crowds of attendants on either side, all set in a gothic temple with an elaborate vaulted ceiling including sculptures; the border includes a beast and a grotesque. 36. Folio 143r, The Adoration of the Magi, the Virgin and Child attended by Joseph at the entrance of the partially ruined stable on the right, the kings kneeling and presenting their golden gifts, set in a landscape with the kings arriving by horseback at the head of their retinue around a cliff on the right; the border including a dog and a mermaid both contemplating their reflections in mirrors. 37. Folio 144r, The Presentation of Christ in the Temple, the Virgin offering the Child to Simeon dressed in a jewelled cope, an acolyte behind, the Virgin attended by Joseph and three women, all set in the porch of a fine gothic church with statues in the niches and a dark night sky above the tiled roof; the border including two grotesques. 38. Folio 145r, St. Matthew, standing in a tiled interior holding a spear and a book bound in green, set below a gothic canopy including two sculptures; the border including a bird, a pot of strawberries, and female grotesque also with a spear. 39. Folio 146r, The Annunciation, the Virgin kneeling below a gothic canopy on the left, Gabriel on the right in an elaborate jewelled cope, a vase of lilies in the foreground, tapestry behind, the towers of Nazareth visible over a wall; the border including a griffin and a grotesque centaur drinking out of a bottle. 40. Folio 147r, The Resurrection, Christ standing before the open sepulchre holding the banner of the resurrection and raising his hand in blessing, four soldiers asleep (or pretending to sleep, for they seem to be peeping), set in a landscape with Jerusalem beyond; the border including two men, one of them riding a bear. 41. Folio 148r, The Ascension, the feet of Christ disappearing into Heaven as the Virgin and the Apostles watch from around a little flat-topped mountain; the border including two grotesques. 42. Folio 149r, Pentecost, the apostles gathered around the Virgin before a tapestry in a gothic church, as the Holy Dove hovers above; the border including a man emerging from a flower and being astonished at the sight of a polychrome grotesque. 43. Folio 150r, The Trinity, God the Father enthroned holding the Body of Christ on his lap as the Holy Dove hovers above, God seated on a throne lined with tapestry within a pavilion held open by two angels and inscribed around the pelmet, "sancta trinitas unus deus", two other angels kneeling in the foreground; the border including a rabbit and a grotesque with the head of a pope. 44. Folio 151r, The Procession of the Holy Sacrament, two priests carrying gothic monstrance on a frame over their shoulders as they walk to the left beneath a canopy held aloft by four laymen in long blue robes, the canopy inscribed in gold "ave verum corpus", attended by a great crown of people carrying lighted candles; the border including two grotesque centaurs, one also carrying a candle, the other in prayer. 45. Folio 152r, The Decollation of St.John the Baptist, the Baptist kneeling in prayer in a courtyard as the executioner raises his oriental sword and a jailer stands with a cudgel in the doorway of the prison, Salome standing on the right with a dish waiting for the head, Herod feasting behind in the hall of his gothic palace with Salome at table whispering with her mother; the border including two grotesques with human heads and a pot of roses. 46. Folio 153r, Noli me Tangere, the Risen Christ with St. Mary Magdalene who kneels before him as she suddenly recognises him, set in an enclosed garden in a landscape of hills, a river and towns; the border including a grotesque and a bird. 47. Folio 154r, The Martyrdom of St. Lawrence, set in a pastoral landscape with a town in the distance; to the right a group of richly-clad men watching the martyrdom of the saint who is being roasted on a grid over a fire stoked and fanned by four ruffians; the border including a centaur with a sack of coal and a bird. 48. Folio 155r, The Assumption of the Virgin, rising through a pale blue starry sky supported by six angels, two each in gold, pale green and red, the earth below, God the Father above holding a crown and surrounded by cherubim and seraphim; the border including two grotesques, one in prayer. 49. Folio 156r, St. Lo, the bishop of Coutances dressed in a cope bordered with jewels standing with his crosier before a tapestry in a church beneath a gothic canopied rood with two sculptures; the border including two grotesques, one also dressed as a bishop with mitre and crosier. 50. Folio 157r, St. Michael vanquishing the Devil, the armoured archangel with raised wings trampling on the devil and fighting off another little demon which has clung to his shield, all set by the side of a lake in an elegant rocky landscape; the border including two grotesques, one with a club, one with a crosier. 51. Folio 158r, The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian, the saint being tied to a tree on the right as two archers shoot him full of arrows under the direction of a ruler and his courtiers, set in a valley below a hill surmounted by a castle, with a view of a distant town by a lake; the border including a grotesque with a bow and arrow and another with the face of a monkey and the tail of a peacock. 52. Folio 159r, Saints James and Philip, standing in separate alcoves lined with tapestries in a gothic church, canopied roof with a standing sculpture; the border including two grotesques. 53. Folio 160r, The Crucifixion, the Virgin on the left, St.John on the right, a skull in the foreground, set in a landscape with Jerusalem behind; the border including two grotesques, one in prayer. 54. Folio 161r, All Saints, at the top God the Father enthroned with cherubim and seraphim all around, beside him the Virgin and St.John the Baptist, in the next rank the apostles (including SS.Bartholomew, Peter, Paul, James, etc.), then the martyrs and male saints (including SS. Anthony, Jerome, Stephen, Peter Martyr, etc.) and in the foreground the female saints (including SS. Mary Magdalene, Katherine, Barbara, etc.); the border including a bird and a grotesque. 55. Folio 162r, St. Martin Dividing his Cloak with a Beggar, the saint as a nobleman on a white horse (its trappings embroidered with its owner's initials 'S.M.') emerging from the great gothic gates of Amiens on the left and turning to cut his cloak to give half to a one-legged beggar; the border including a centaur and a winged dragon. 56. Folio 163r, St.Katherine of Alexandria, the saint kneeling in a landscape as an executioner raises an oriental sword to behead her under the direction of a ruler and his courtiers on the left, set in a fine landscape with the broken wheels on the right and castles behind; the border including a dragon with a human head and a bird. 57. Folio 164r, The Crucifixion of St.Andrew, in a landscape with towns in the distance, two ruffians tying the saint to the X-shaped cross watched by a prince and his courtiers on the left; the border including a bird and a grotesque about to throw a spear. 58. Folio 165r, Christ as the Saviour of the World, standing holding a crystal orb and raising his right hand in blessing, two angels looking over a tapestry behind; the border including a man with a bow and arrow and a grotesque woman with a windmill for a tail and a sack of grain over her shoulder. literature: A. Bachelin, Description du Livre d'Heures du Prieure de Saint-Lo de Rouen, 1869, passim. R. Watson, The Playfair Hours, A Late Fifteenth Century Illuminated Manuscript from Rouen, 1984, pp.74-5 ("magnificent") and p.127, n.61. C. Rabel, 'Artiste et clientele a la fin du Moyen Age: les manuscrits profanes du Maitre de l'echevinage de Rouen', Revue de l'Art, LXXXIV, 1989, p.59, n.29. L.M.C. Randall, Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Walters Art Gallery, II, France, 1420-1540, 1992, citing present MS. on p.298. C. de Hamel, 'The Illuminated Manuscript Collection of Edmond de Rothschild', Antiquaries, Book Collectors and the Circles of Learning, ed. R. Myers and M. Harris, 1996, p.150, n.55.
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