c 1500 Book of Hours Leaf - Luke Writing Gospel


Original leaf from a French medieval illuminated manuscript Book of Hours. 13 lines of hand-ruled text written in Latin with dark brown ink in fine lettre bâtarde script on animal vellum with rubrics in red. One two-line illuminated initial in burnished gold on blue and red ground with white penwork; one two-line initial in blue and red on burnished gold ground. The ¼ border, recto, is a colorful floral motif on liquid gold ground; the text, verso, is surrounded by an intricate floral border in red, blue, green on a liquid gold ground. One six-line miniature painting of St. Luke writing his Gospel.                   

Origin:  Paris, France circa 1500.

Size:  110 x 75mm – 4.25 x 2.9 inches, from a diminutive manuscript likely written for a lady.                            

The miniature painting (verso) depicts St. Luke seated wearing a red robe with gold.  His attribute, the ox, sits patiently at his feet and the night sky with bright gold stars is evident in the background. 

The text, recto, begins:  “Protector…” (O God, the protector of all who trust in you, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy: Increase and multiply upon us your mercy; that, with you as our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we lose not the things eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever).  The text beneath the miniature begins the Second Gospel Lesson (Annunciation to Mary) -  Luke 1:2627: “In illo tempore…” (And at that time the angel Gabriel was sent from God into a city of Galilee, called Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph…).

Provenance:   ex-collection of Brooklyn Museum of Art, acquired in 1919.  Deaccessioned and sold to support the museum collection.

Nice antiquarian condition - Small wormhole in lower floral border.

Shipped unmatted

  • Inventory# IM-13145