Description

    Extraordinary Illuminated Manuscript Leaf

    [Illuminated Manuscript] Medieval Miniature on a Vellum Leaf From a French Book of Hours in Latin by the "Monkey Master": The Cross with torture implements used in the Crucifixion. Hours of the Cross, Matins. Text: "Domine labia mea aperies" [Northern France]: [Circa 1480]. On the recto and verso of a single 3.25 x 5.75 inch vellum leaf. Fine medieval miniature on vellum from a French Book of Hours in Latin, in a French Batarde Secretary script. A rare example of a miniature emphasizing the cross on which Christ died. The upper half has the crucifix with a ladder leaning on it, hanging from the cross are flails, the clothes of the condemned, dice, a scimitar, a lance, a purse, a lamp, and the crown of thorns. At the side is a marble pillar wound with rope. At the base are a hammer, a set of pliers, nails, bones, and a basin. A severed head sits on the ground behind. The background is of bushes, trees, and castellated hills. A hand floats in the air under the lamp at the right. In a compartment below is the nine-line text in gold and rose inks with seven initials. The largest is historiated with a duck and a flower in multiple colors. The surrounding border is in an elaborate blue and white vine on a gold background. Two lance-wielding monkeys - one riding a lion, the other a griffon, ride toward each other. A small bird and a winged beast are at the top of the compartment on opposite sides. The verso has twenty lines in brown and rose inks with one illuminated initial "D" in gold and blue with white tracery and a red and green flower. At the left is a fine border in two compartments, in blue ground with tall flowers in a lighter blue with gold highlights. A lion sits at the base of one of the flowers on a green ground. Some marginal adherences at edges from an old mounting. The Monkey Master, so called because of the use of a monkey figure in the drolleries, was probably not one man but a workshop in Delft. On the "Monkey Master" see "The Golden Age of Dutch Manuscript Painting" New York: Brazillier, 1990, pages 266; 277-8. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.

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    Auction Dates
    August, 2015
    5th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 14
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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