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Lot 22: Book of Hours, use of Rome.- Illuminated manuscript on vellum, Florence, c.1470.
15 November 2016
London, United KingdomLive Auction
Description: Book of Hours, use of Rome. Illuminated manuscript in Latin on vellum, [Florence, c.1470]. 120 x 79mm., I + 301 + I leaves, unfoliated, three blank, 16 leaves added in the sixteenth century, further single blanks cancelled after fols. 277 and 295, lacking two leaves after fol. 27, else complete, thirty-one quires, collation: 112+10, (fols. 1-2 and 15-22 added around the quire in the sixteenth century), 28+1 (of 10+1), 3-1110, 122, 1310+1, 14-1910, 2010+1, 21-2210, 232, 2410+1, 25-2710, 2810-1, (last blank cancelled), 2910+1, 308-1, (last blank cancelled), 316 (added in the sixteenth century), text block: 62 x 42mm, 12 lines, horizontal catchwords with calligraphic surround, text written in dark brown ink in a gothic liturgical hand, rubricated throughout, headings in burnished gold, numerous three-line penwork initials in colours on burnished gold grounds extending the full-length of the page into upper and lower margins, seven three-line historiated initials in leafy design in colours on burnished gold grounds with full-length borders of multi-coloured floral stems and leaves infilled with gold dots within bursts of radiating penwork, five six-to-seven line historiated initials in multi-coloured leafy surrounds on burnished gold with full borders of flowers, leaves, vases and putti, each with several small cartouches in burnished gold frames enclosing miniatures, five full-page miniatures added to face the historiated initials, in colours and liquid gold, with gold borders within a further border with liquid gold acanthus scrolls, pearls and other classical motifs, full-page drawing added c.1572 to front flyleaf depicting the Virgin and Child with St. Anne in the style of an engraving, with the title for the book in cartouche above, manuscript generally in very good condition, some rubbing and thumbing, extremities of full borders occasionally lightly cropped, a few signs of use, lower margin of fol.4r with a few contemporary annotations, probably additions to the Calendar, later plain calf (probably 17th century), lacking clasps, binding slightly wormed, upper joint repaired. Provenance: - Two coats-of-arms at foot of fol.23v and 24r. On the left of each page arms of the family Gucci di Dino of Florence (see Crollalanza, Dizionario Storico-Blasonico, 1886, p. 511). The red Calendar signals St. Zenobius of Florence (25th May) and he is invoked in the short Litany. - A certain Jakob Vargoczki, from Przemysl, in Poland ('Jacobus Vargoczki civis Premisliensis', erased sixteenth-century ownership inscription on fol. 23v) - the insertions on thicker vellum in calligraphic Germanic hand and additional prayers and the table of feasts for 21 years from 1572 are probably for him. - Presented on 19 May 1713 to His Highness Carolus Stanislaus Radziwill, Duke of Olyka, by Constantin Brzostowski (1713), bishop of Viln 1687-1713, perpetual custodian of the Cistercian abbey of Mogila (Clara Tumba, founded 1226, diocese of Cracow), with long presentation inscription on the verso of the front flyleaf. Text: fol. 3r: Calendar fol. 15r: the Apostles' Creed and other sixteenth-century additions fol. 24r: the Hours of the Virgin, Use of Rome, with Matins fol. 98r: series of seasonal variants fol. 125r: the Hours of the Cross fol. 196r: the Penitential Psalms and Litany fol. 229r: the Hours of the Cross fol. 279r: the Psalms of Degree fol. 295v: Sixteenth-century additions Illumination: This is a luxurious Florentine Book of Hours probably made around 1470 and then with full-page miniatures inserted perhaps around 1500. The major portion of the book is attributable to Francesco Di Lorenzo Rosselli (1445-1513), illuminator and panel painter in Florence who travelled to Buda to work for Matthias Corvinus in 1480. His style is close to that of Francesco d'Antonio del Chierico (see A. Garzelli, Miniatura Fiorentina del Rinascimento, 1440-1525, II, pls. 500, 512, 531-33, etc.). The pages illustrated by him here are: fol. 24r: historiated initial of the Virgin and Child and vignettes of four bearded prophets, the Holy Dove, and the Nativity of Christ in the stable, with six putti and two coat-of-arms fol. 38r: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 54r: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 60v: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 67r: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 73r: historiated initial of a woman in a bonnet fol. 79r: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 90r: historiated initial of a young girl fol. 125r: historiated initial of a hooded figure in a grey shroud standing in a grave surrounded by skulls; with four vignettes of skulls, either singly, or four together, or in a vase, or on a table being blessed by a bearded monk, with four putti. fol. 196r: historiated initial of David in the wilderness; with two vignettes of David with his psaltery, one of a bearded man, and one of the Holy Dove in flight, with six putti, two with braziers. fol. 229r: historiated initial of Christ as the Man of Sorrow standing in the Tomb; with five vignettes of five apostles and four putti. fol. 279r: historiated initial of the Virgin as a young girl tending a sacred lamp in the Temple; with three vignettes of the Virgin Mary and one of the Holy Dove in flight, with six putti. Sixteenth-century full-page miniatures by different artists in a more formal painterly style, in soft colours with delicate whiskery liquid gold, attributable to Monte del Flora (d. ca. 1528), son of the Sculptor Giovanni di Miniato and brother and partner of the illuminator Gherardo del Flora (d. 1497). The high quality of the painting of these miniatures in fine architectural settings and rocky landscapes are indicative of Monte's style (cf. Garzelli, pl. 993 - compare pl.997 with fol. 195v here; and compare pl.998 with fol. 23v etc.). The full-page miniatures are: fol. 23v: the Annunciation, set in a classical temple, with God appearing above in a blaze of light; the border includes five bearded prophets, the Holy Dove in flight, two putti, two coat-of-arms. fol. 124v: the Raising of Lazarus in a classical building, with St.Mary Magdalene falling on her knees to thank Christ; with five vignettes of skulls, two of hooded figures, and one with a winged skeleton, together with two putti with strings of pearls. fol. 195v: David in the wilderness, his crown on the ground before him, kneeling by a cave (like the image of St. Jerome) with God appearing above and a large crowd of people kneeling in the distance on the right; with eight vignettes of King David at different times of his life (as a child, with the head of Goliath, with his psaltery, as an old man, etc.), and two putti with strings of pearls. fol. 228v: the Crucifixion, with a crowd of saints on the left and Jewish edlers on the right; the border includes a pelican in her piety (representing the shedding of blood for mankind), seven onlookers watching the Crucifixion and two putti. fol. 278v: the Assumption of the Virgin, surrounded by golden cherubim and attended by two angels with large candlesticks, as the apostles gather around her bier on the ground; the border includes four prophets and three putti. Literature: A. Garzelli, Miniatura Fiorentina del Rinascimento, 1440-1525. Un primo censimento, Firenze 1985.
Notes: Category: Western And Medieval Manuscripts