c 1532 Book of Hours Leaf - Title Page


Original leaf from a printed & beautifully hand-illuminated Book of Hours.  Ruled for twenty-six lines of Latin and French text, printed in black on animal vellum.  (163 x 108mm – 6 3/8 x 4 1/4’’)

Initials illuminated by hand in gold, on red ground with delicate gold penwork. Printed and hand-painted with rich sumptuous colors in the workshop of Germain Hardouyn - printer and highly skilled illuminator. Reference: Bohata 1157.

 Paris, c. 1532.

Beautiful Title Leaf with a three-quarter-page painting, framed within gold architectural columns, depicting two angels with halos and blue wings holding a coat-of-arms in front of a tree with red sky in the background.  In purpose and format, printed Books of Hours followed the older manuscript examples. The more luxurious were printed on vellum. 

The name of Germain Hardouyn appears beneath in the text as publisher and Hardouyn specifies the title Book of Hours for the Use of Rome and the location of his firm “between the two doors of the Palace at the sign of Saint Marguerite”.  Verso: Elaborate borders hand-painted with tempera color in a floral motif with acanthus leaves and berries on liquid gold ground.

The one-line illuminated “O” (verso) begins part of a hymn by St. Thomas Aquinas: “O Salutaris…” (O Saving Victim, opening wide The gate of heaven to all below; Our foes press on from every side. Thine aid supply, Thy strength bestow). The hymn then switches to the opening of a prayer honoring the Blessed Sacrament: “O sacrum convivium…” (O sacred banquet, in which Christ is received, the memory of His Passion is renewed; the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory given to us).

Presented in an archival 14 x 11'' mat


  • Inventory# IM-13055
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