Original leaf from a medieval manuscript Breviary. 33 lines written in Latin in double columns with dark brown and red ink on animal vellum (205 x 150mm - 8.2 x 6")
Six multi-line illuminated initials alternating in dark blue with delicate red penwork and red with delicate blue penwork – all extending into the margins.
France, c. 1300-25.
This leaf celebrates The Nativity of Jesus. The text includes six lessons on the subject by St. Augustine. The illuminated ''T'' begins: ''Temporalis...'' (Now is the nativity of the Son of God, our Lord, according to the flesh...).
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.