IM-6045: (160x120mm) Original leaf from a manuscript Book of Hours. 15 lines of red-ruled Latin text, written in brown ink, with rubrics in red, on animal vellum. One three-line initial in blue with white tracery & an internal floral motif on a gold ground; five one-line initials and four line-extenders in gold on blue and red ground with delicate white tracery.
Northern France: probably Paris, c. 1460.
The five miniatures are exceptionally beautiful paintings opening the Penitential Psalms. The paintings clockwise from upper right depict: David and Bathsheba (King David gazes longingly from his palace window at the beautiful Bathsheba), Uriah’s head brought to King David (David has Bathsheba’s husband murdered in battle), David & Goliath (David is shown triumphant in his victory over Goliath), David in Prayer (King David kneels in prayer to God, while the prophet Nathan reproaches David), and the largest miniature – the Last Judgment (Christ sits upon a rainbow with the earth as his footstool. The Virgin Mary, John the Baptist & other apostles are on either side. Souls are seen rising from the dead as the angels announce the triumphant event.
The illuminated “D” begins Psalm 6:1-7: “Domine…” (O Lord, rebuke me not in thy indignation, nor chastise me in thy wrath. Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am weak…).
The text, verso, has a border of highly decorative floral design with flowers, berries and acanthus leaves in blue, red, green and brushed gold. Lavish use of gold is evident in the miniature paintings, particularly in the shading of the clothed figures. This illumination was executed by a skilled artist working in the style of the Maitre Francois.