Illuminated Leaf from a Book of Hours

BOOK OF HOURS   |   ILLUMINATED LEAF

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"MY MOUTH SHALL DECLARE THY PRAISE": LOVELY ILLUMINATED LEAF FROM A FRENCH BOOK OF HOURS, CIRCA 1490, FEATURING A STRIKING HAND-COLORED IMAGE OF THE ANNUNCIATION

(ILLUMINATED LEAF). Illuminated Leaf from a Book of Hours. France, circa 1490. Single vellum leaf (4 by 5-3/4 inches), illuminated in gold, brown, white, gray, red, green, purple, orange and blue inks; matted and window framed, measures 10-1/2 by 13 inches.

Wonderful illuminated miniature from a French Book of Hours, a large, hand-colored image depicting the Annunciation, with four lines of Latin text from the Hours of the Virgin in gothic script, one four-line floriated initial, one two-line initial, and a line extender, beautifully bordered on all sides by berries, flowers, acanthus leaves, and a bird-like drollery.

This beautiful illuminated miniature is from a Book of Hours from late 15th-century France. The Latin gothic text is from the Hours of the Virgin. The large domed miniature depicts the Annunciation. Mary and Gabriel kneel beneath the Holy Spirit, depicted as a dove. In this image, only Gabriel wears a halo whereas Mary, despite her iconic blue robes, maintains a rather unadorned appearance. The scene is set against an elaborate background with carved wood walls and a canopied bed. The verso bears 17 lines of unbordered black and red Gothic text, two two-line filigree gilt initials on solid grounds, three similar one-line initials, and five line extenders.

Light wear to faces, presumably from devotional use, a few slight smudge and rub marks. A beautiful leaf in extremely good condition.

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