Vellum printed Hours leaf. Hardouyn, Paris, 1512

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  Metal cuts of “The Lamb of God”, dragons.   

Recto: Text in Latin printed in a Gothic font on vellum.   Two two-line and seven one-line initials in liquid gold on blue and red grounds added by hand after the printing.  Metal cuts include a saint praying, God enthroned with the Lamb of God, a winged dragon and another fanciful beast.

Verso:   As Recto, with further hand added initials and metal cuts including a dragon, putti and horned musicians.  In the centre of the bottom metal cut are the initials ‘Gh’ - for Gilles Hardouyn, the publisher of the book.

Origin:   Paris.

Date:   c.1512.

Content: The text on Recto includes sections of Psalm148 , Laudate dominum de celis and the Song of Zachariah, also called the Canticle of Zachary:

Benedictus [Dominus] Deus Israhel

quia visitavit et fecit redemptionem plebi suae

et erexit cornu salutis nobis

in domo David pueri sui.

Blessed be the Lord God of Israel :

for he hath visited and redeemed his people;

And hath raised up a mighty salvation for us :

in the house of his servant David;

Condition:  The leaf is in excellent condition.  A  couple of small marks in the margins are masked off by the mat.  It is unconditionally guaranteed genuine.

Notes:  Books of Hours were prayer books designed for the laity who wished to emulate the cycle of daily devotions followed by the clergy but without taking actual vows.  The contents grew out of the psalter but included a mixed variety of other types of material - hymns, lessons, biblical readings, calendars etc. Its central text is the Hours of the Virgin. There are eight Hours (times for prayer): Matins, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, None, Vespers and Compline.

The popularity of the "Medieval bestseller" - the Book of Hours -  did not wane after the invention of print; in fact the advent of moveable type made Books of Hours more affordable and widely available than ever.  In the early years of the sixteenth century two brothers, Gilles and Germain Hardouyn, produced hundreds of printed Books of Hours. Gilles was the publisher and Germain was a fine illustrator who later printed and published under his own sign. Between 1509-1529 the Gilles’ workshop was at the end of the Notre Dame bridge ‘at the sign of the golden rose’.

Size: Leaf: approx. 180x115 mm. Please note that shipping is invoiced separately.

Item No: PSA194

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