Medieval Breviary Leaf - Elaborate Initials - c. 1300-25


Original leaf from a medieval manuscript Breviary.  33 lines written in Latin in double columns with dark brown and red ink on animal vellum. (208 x 153mm - 8.3 x 6.1").

Two exceptional multi-line illuminated initials extending along much of the margins  in red and blue. Four one or two-line illuminated initials alternating in dark blue with delicate red penwork and red with delicate blue penwork – most extending into the margins; numerous one-line illuminated initials in red. 

France, c. 1300-25.

The elaborate illuminated ''S'' begins the prayer:   ''Spiritum nobis...'' (Pour upon us, O Lord, the Spirit of Thy love, to make us of one heart, whom, by Thy tender mercy, Thou hast filled with the paschal sacrament...).

The two-line illuminated ''I'' begins Mark 16:1: ''In illa tempora Maria...'' (And at that time Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, brought sweet spices, that coming, they might anoint Jesus).  

The elaborate illuminated ''A''  begins a homily written by Pope Gregory.

A Breviary is composed of many books (prayers, hymns, psalms...) painstakingly but carefully written by hand, and used by monks and priests to conduct their daily services. 

Shipped in archival 14x11'' mat

  • Inventory Number: IM-10139