c 1500 Book of Hours Leaf - Garden of Gethsemane


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 blue and white with an internal floral design all on burnished gold ground; one two-line illuminated initial and two one-line illuminated initials in burnished gold on blue and red ground with white penwork;. 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 The Garden of Gethsemane.           

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 (recto) depicts Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane as Judas, with soldiers behind him, plants a kiss on Christ’s  cheek.  The face on one soldier is visible with numerous helmets of other soldiers seen behind him approaching to make the arrest.  Christ’s left hand reaches down restoring Malchus’s ear.  Stars are evident in the night sky.

The two-line illuminated “D” begins:  “Domine…” (Thou O Lord wilt open my lips. And my mouth shall declare thy praise…).

The  next two-line illuminated “P” begins “Patris…” (The wisdom of the Father, and truth divine beside,

God and man surprised was even at the morning tide: His known disciples left Him for to follow more: Sold and betrayed to the Jews they did afflict Him sore.).

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

Shipped unmatted

  • Inventory# IM-13191