Medieval Book of Hours Leaf - St. Matthew writing his Gospel


Original leaf from a manuscript Book of Hours. 14 lines of Latin text, ruled in red with rubrics in red. Written in angular gothic bookhand on animal vellum. (147x95 mm).

One illuminated two-line initial in pink on a blue ground with an interior floral interior in pink, red and green.  Elaborate panel border in a floral motif in blue, white, green, red, pink and yellow with fourteen birds including four owls (attribute of Christ, who sacrificed Himself to save mankind) on a liquid gold ground. France (Bourges), c. 1470-80.

Miniature painting (66 x 50mm) of St. Matthew writing his Gospel:  St. Matthew is seated on a high-back chair with his feet on a cushion, his head turned towards the angel (his attribute) who wears a pink robe, has wings of white, yellow red and blue, and stands holding a gild-edged book.  St. Matthew dips his right hand into an inkwell as he continues to write his Gospel on the scroll across his lap. A landscaped garden is seen on the right. 

The two-line “C” begins Matthew 2: 1-5: ''Cum natus...'' (When Jesus therefore was born in Bethlehem of Judah, in the days of King Herod, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem.  Saying, Where is he that is born king of the Jews?  For we have seen his star in the east, and are come to adore him...). 

  • Inventory# IM-10615
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