An original leaf from a manuscript Book of Hours. 16 lines of text, ruled in red, written in Latin in angular gothic book-hand script on animal vellum. Rubrics in red. (175 x 128mm – 6 7/8 x 5’’)
One three-line illuminated initial in blue and white with a floral interior on a gold ground; one two-line illuminated initial, five one-line illuminated initials and three illuminated line extenders in burnished gold on red and blue ground.
Northern France (Normandy) c. 1490-1500.
An unusual jewel-filled border surrounds the miniature painting in red, green, blue and white on liquid gold ground. The surrounding border is a dense floral motif in red, green, blue and liquid gold.
Miniature painting of The Pentecost (recto): The Virgin Mary, wearing blue robes with gold stitching is seated, center, with a book open on her lap and her hands clasped in prayer. St. John the Evangelist wears white and gray robes; all apostles look upward at the Holy Spirit, in the form of a white dove with golden rays and descending red flames hovering above with the blue sky visible in the background. The foreground displays a tiled floor in green and gold. This leaf opens Hours of the Holy Spirit – Hour of Matins.
The three-line illuminated “D” begins: “Domine…” (Thou O Lord wilt open my lips. And my mouth shall declare thy praise…).
The two-line illuminated “N” begins the hymn: “Nobis…” (The grace of the Holy Spirit free unto us befall: Wherewith was overshadowed the maid of maidens all. When the angel Gabriel his salutation said, The Word itself flesh became and virgin fruitful made).