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Lot 298: BOOK OF HOURS, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [Italy, ?Florence, last quarter

Est: £500 GBP - £700 GBPSold:
Christie'sNovember 29, 2006London, United Kingdom

Item Overview


BOOK OF HOURS, in Latin, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, [Italy, ?Florence, last quarter 15th-century]. 130 x 95mm, i + 138 leaves: 1-5 8, 6 9(i a singleton), 7 7(v a singleton), 8 6, 9-10 8, 11 7(v a singleton), 12 6, 13-16 8, 17 7(?vi a singleton), 18 8, catchwords on final versos of each gathering, 12 lines written in black ink in a round gothic bookhand between two verticals and 13 horizontals ruled in plummet, text justification: 70 x 45mm, rubrics in red, one- and two-line initials of alternate burnished gold with purple flourishing and of blue with red flourishing, THREE LARGE INITIALS WITH ACCOMPANYING BORDERS, with staves of pink and yellow, with black infills, on burnished gold grounds and accompanying bar-borders and sprays in upper and lower margins of naturalistic flowers and acanthus in pink, blue and green, interspersed with hairline sprays and burnished gold disks, TWO HISTORIATED INITIALS WITH FULL-PAGE ARCHITECTURAL BORDERS, with putti and arms, the first with 19th-century overpainting, the second a 19th-century replacement, retaining original verso (a few small pigment losses, small wormholes at lower margin of a few leaves). Late 19th-century brown morocco gilt. Modern slipcase.

This small Book of Hours for private devotion, with skilfully painted initials and borders, contains the Office of the Dead (use of Rome, ff.1-49v) and the Hours of the Virgin (use of Rome, with variants, ff.50-138v). The style of illumination suggests an origin close to Florence, and a date of 1470, added in a later hand on f.132, must be close to the period in which it was made. Despite the 19th-century painting to two leaves, this is an attractive manuscript, with almost every leaf containing one or more burnished gold initials.

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Auction Details

Fine Printed Books and Manuscripts

November 29, 2006, 12:00 AM GMT

85 Old Brompton Road, London, LDN, SW7 3LD, UK