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Lot 24: Book of Hours, use of Rome.- Heures a luisage de Rome, printed on vellum with 15 illuminated woodcuts, Paris, Germain Hardouyn, .
15 November 2016
London, United KingdomLive Auction
Description: Books of Hours, use of Rome. Heures a luisage de Rome tout au long sans riens requerir nouellement imprimees, printed on vellum with illuminated woodcuts, collation: A-M8, 96ff., Gothic type, text in Latin, title and colophon in French, 15 large hand-painted woodcuts (fols. A1r, B2r, B5r, C7v, D5r, E3r, E4r, E5r, E8r, F3r, F6r, G1r, G5v, I1r, K2v), three-line initials in gold, on grounds of blue and dark pink, numerous one and two-line initials in gold on alternating dark pink and blue ground, rubricated in dark pink and blue, overall an excellent copy, browned and stained in places, quire D slightly loose, some illuminated initials slightly discoloured, handsome early 18th-century French brown morocco à la dentelle, spine with four small raised bands, compartments richly gilt-tooled, marbled endpapers in comb pattern, housed in modern black morocco case, 16mo (107 x 68mm.), Paris, Germain Hardouyin, . ⁂ An excessively rare early French edition of the Book of Hours, printed on vellum and datable, from the almanach printed at the beginning, to 1516. The volume was issued from the press of the leading Parisian publisher and illuminator Germain Hardouyn, active from c.1500/1505 to 1539/1541. Between the end of the fifteenth century and the early sixteenth century Paris was the principal centre of production and trade for printed Books of Hours, which from a textual point of view followed the manuscript examples. Germain Hardouyn, together with his brother Gilles, printed almost exclusively Books of Hours, producing at least two or three editions per year. For special clients he produced handsome presentation copies of the Heures, printed on vellum and decorated with illuminations, like the copy offered here. It closely resembles an illuminated manuscript: it is printed on vellum in Gothic type, with colophon but no title-page, illustrated with illuminated woodcuts, and decorated with numerous hand-painted initials and line endings. Hardouyn continued to produce illuminated copies of Hours even after other Parisian publishers had abandoned this production. In the present copy the first miniature shows St Cecilia playing a lute, a feature which suggests that this precious copy on vellum was not a standardised one, but rather individually designed. Patrons could in fact request the inclusion of favourite or local saints, and this was particularly the case in books commissioned by distinguished women. Text: The edition includes all standard textual elements of Hours. It opens with the almanach, for the years 1516-1537; the other sections follow: extracts from the Gospels, the Passion according to John, Office of the Virgin, Seven Penitential Psalms, Litanies, Offices of the Dead, supplemented with short offices and Suffrages. Illumination: The text is accompanied by fifteen handsome illuminated woodcuts at the beginning of sections, and mostly depicting scenes from the life of the Virgin Mary, derived in all likelihood from images previously used in other manuscripts or printed Books of Hours. The illumination was probably executed in Hardouyn's workshop. The leaves containing illuminated woodcuts are framed in gold-painted architectonic borders à l'antique, sketched in red on a gold yellow ground, and decorated with Hardouyn's characteristic dangling cords and tassels. The woodcuts are coloured in the new quicker style with the lines of the cut largely obscured by paint, and only in a few areas do the underlying designs show through. fol. A1r: St. Cecilia fol. B2r: John the Evangelist writing fol. B5r: Christ carrying the Cross fol. C7v: Annunciation fol. D5r: Visitation fol. E3r: Christ carrying the Cross (in a different version) fol. E4r: Marriage of the Virgin E5r: Nativity E8r: Annunciation to the Shepherds F3r: Adoration of the Magi F6r: Presentation in the Temple G1r: Flight into Egypt G5v: Coronation of the Virgin I1r: King David K2v: Job on the Dungheap Literature Bohatta 912; J. Guignard, "Livres d'Heures de Germain Hardouyn à la Bibliothèque Nationale", Les trésors des bibliothèques de France, VII (1942), pp. 30-42; K. Lee Bowen, Christopher Plantin's Books of Hours: Illustration and Production, Nieuwkoop 1997, pp. 30-34; V. Reinburg, French Books of Hours. Making an Archive of Prayer, c. 1400-1600, Cambridge 2012. Not recorded in Lacombe
Notes: Category: Western And Medieval Manuscripts